Sporting legacy boost for Manchester Rugby Club

April 12, 2012 3:18 PM
Sport England cheque Manchester Rugby Club. L-R, MP for Cheadle Mark Hunter, President of Manchester Rugby Club Ewan McCray and Ben Williams from Sport England

Sport England cheque Manchester Rugby Club. L-R, MP for Cheadle Mark Hunter, President of Manchester Rugby Club Ewan McCray and Ben Williams from Sport England

Manchester Rugby Union Football Club has secured £50,000.00 of Olympic legacy funding from Sport England's Inspired Facilities Fund. Local MP Mark Hunter attended a special event to present the five figure cheque to Manchester Rugby Club President, Ewan McCray.

The Inspired Facilities fund is part of the £135 million Places People Play legacy programme that is bringing the magic of a home Olympic and Paralympic Games into communities across the country. Every sports facility that receives funding will carry the London 2012 Inspire mark - celebrating the link to the Games.

The funding will enable the installation of new floodlighting at the ground. The floodlighting will allow the club to extend the area that is used for training purposes, enabling more teams to train in the evenings and use the current training area less intensively.

Sport England's Chair, Richard Lewis, said:

"This investment will create a fantastic sporting legacy for Manchester.

"This fund has really hit the mark with sports clubs. It shows we're offering the legacy that people want for their local community. For hundreds of clubs and tens of thousands of people, 2012 will be the year their local sports facilities got better."

Commenting, Mark said:

"I am delighted that Manchester Rugby Club has received this investment. It is great to see this type of funding coming into grass roots community sport - enabling sports clubs to sustain and encourage new participants.

It is a fitting way to support and celebrate the London 2012 Games by providing better local facilities for people to use and enjoy for the foreseeable future."

The project is one of 350 local community sports groups who have been offered a total of £17.4 million in Olympic legacy funding through the Inspired Facilities Fund.

The investments announced today will breathe new life into tired facilities that can be unattractive to sports participants, difficult to maintain and run. Grants have also been offered to convert existing buildings into venues that are suitable for grassroots sport and to allow local clubs to buy the facilities they use.

Minister for Sport and the Olympics, Hugh Robertson MP, said: "We want to use the Olympic and Paralympics next summer to inspire a generation to get involved in sport across the country. This is why as part of the £135 million Places People Play legacy programme we invited community sports clubs to apply for funding to upgrade their facilities."

Inspired Facilities has been designed to be as simple and accessible as possible for potential applicants, with a shorter form and a catalogue of ready-made options to choose from.

Places People Play is being delivered by Sport England. We are working in partnership with the British Olympic Association (BOA) and the British Paralympic Association (BPA) with the backing of The London Organising Committee of the Olympic Games and Paralympic Games (LOCOG) and the London 2012 Inspire mark.

LOCOG Chair, Seb Coe, said: "This is a fantastic funding project that will deliver a real legacy from the London 2012 Games. It will provide a whole range of sporting opportunities for young people through improved facilities and will I hope inspire them to take up sport."

The announcement was welcomed by the Local Government Association. Cllr Chris White, Chair of its Culture, Tourism and Sport Board, said: "In spite of budget pressures, councils are striving to keep supporting local sports clubs and want to work with them in creating a lasting and meaningful Olympic and Paralympic legacy. This much-needed funding will hopefully act as a catalyst to further strengthen local partnerships between councils and sports clubs and get more people playing sport."

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