Fund gives sporting chance to increase participation level

A NEW fund is aiming to help increase sport participation in the county.

The ‘Sports Challenge Fund’ – developed by Northumberland County Council and Northumberland Sport – aims to build on the enthusiasm shown of the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games.

It will offer grants of up to £3,000 for National Government Bodies of Sport (NGBs) to encourage projects and activities that will help them deliver their national programmes in the county.

The fund is aimed at, but not exclusive, to young people aged between 14 and 25, designed to raise sporting participation levels.

Coun Neil Bradbury, executive member responsible for leisure, said: “Through the Sports Challenge Fund, we want to ensure that the Games don’t become a distant memory and by supporting and working directly with NGBs we believe we can create more opportunities for our residents to participation in sport.

“We would welcome any bids from NGBs that can demonstrate an impact on participation levels.

“I’d be particularly pleased to support sports where participation in the county is lower than the national average and to help them develop in Northumberland.”

Doug Lowery, executive director for Northumberland Sport, said: “The London 2012 Games was clearly a great source of inspiration, which we hope has provided the impetus for people to want to get more active through sport.

“The fund provides a great opportunity to support the good work that already happens across Northumberland.

“It also ensures that our support is directly linked with NGB priorities in the county.”

There are 43 NGBs in England, overseeing the existing vision for their sport as well as the future direction and focus of that sport.

Their key purpose is to increase participation, develop talent and deliver top-level success.

For more information about the fund visit