Following a thorough review with funding partner Sport England, the British Equestrian Federation (BEF) has been challenged specifically to develop its work in increasing participation in the 26+ age group.
The assessment applauded the efforts of equestrian sport to motivate people into horse riding, recognising progress made to date through the Hoof project and its programmes such as Take Back the Reins, Accessibility Mark and the Hoof Business Networks.
During the course of the review Sport England praised the customer-focused approach of the Hoof brand and the progress gained in cultivating business to business relationships through the Networks since the restructure of the programme 12 months ago.
They also expressed an enthusiasm for the BEF to work more closely with The British Horse Society as a delivery partner to help pick up the pace of activity in increasing adult participation.
The BHS and BEF are therefore delighted to be developing a new partnership that has been forged to further develop the scope of offering for this age group. In parallel with the Accessibility Mark project currently being piloted with the Riding for the Disabled Association (RDA) to increase riding opportunities to people with a disability, the BEF will be channelling a percentage of its investment to the BHS to help gather momentum with adult riders.
Andrew Finding, Chief Executive of the BEF, commented: “We are looking forward to working on a joint participation project with our colleagues at The British Horse Society to help us drive up the levels of participation for adult riders.
"We see it as an opportunity to accelerate the work we have already been doing. I am confident that we can work very well with Lynn Petersen and her team to develop a project and implement it through the BHS.”
Lynn Petersen, Chief Executive of The British Horse Society, added: “This is an exciting development for the BHS. We are delighted to be working with the BEF to play our part in driving the participation numbers for equestrianism.
"As we explore our ideas over the coming weeks, we look forward to developing effective plans for increasing participation by encouraging people to experience the joy of riding. It's a beautiful experience."
Read the full Sport England press release announcing funding decisions below.
Sport England continues tough approach to sport delivery
Sport England is announcing today the outcome of its first ‘Payment for Results’ review, which looks at the performance of the governing bodies it funds to increase the number of people who play their sports.
Around half of Sport England’s total grant funding is invested in 46 National Governing Bodies (NGBs) to grow their sport. Under the Payment for Results process, their performance is reviewed annually to ensure they are delivering results and value for the public money they receive. Those failing to achieve annual targets risk losing up to 20 per cent of their future funding.
Based on the December Active People Survey participation numbers, 11 NGBs (which represent athletics, football, rugby union, rowing, badminton, cricket, equestrianism, golf, hockey, mountaineering and netball) were at risk of losing funding.
Today’s announcement means that Sport England is withdrawing a total of £2.8 million of funding from six NGBs (the Football Association, England Golf Partnership, England Netball, England Hockey, British Mountaineering Council and British Rowing) all of which have seen the number of people who play their sport regularly fall. These NGBs need to make significant changes to their approach to growing their sport. Sport England will reinvest funds in the same sports, but outside the NGB.
Three NGBs (England and Wales Cricket Board, Badminton England and Rugby Football Union) have been put on notice that they must deliver growth by December 2014 or lose money next year.
Sport England Chief Executive, Jennie Price, says: “I want these decisions to send a clear message to those NGBs who need to change. This year we are removing up to 10 per cent of their future investment, and we will be working with them to improve their plans. I want to reassure people who play those sports that they won’t lose out – we will still fund them, but through other bodies, such as local authorities or charities.
Where we think NGBs are doing the right things to encourage people to play their sport – rugby, cricket and badminton – we are backing them by giving them another year to prove their plans can deliver results.”
Minister for Sport Helen Grant said: “I want more people to get involved in sport and am pleased that Sport England is committed to working closely with sports governing bodies to make that happen. But we have to get results from the £500 million of public money invested through them. If governing bodies plans are not working it is right that Sport England invests some of the funding in other ways to try and bring more people into sport.”
Sport England is taking £1.6 million away from the Football Association (FA) because the number of people playing football regularly – once a week, every week – has dropped sharply . The FA has improved its insight into why people play football, but they now need to apply it, especially outside the traditional game, for example in the five a side market. Grassroots football remains one of our biggest participation sports, so we are looking to the FA to work on a bigger scale and at a faster pace.
Sport England will reinvest the £1.6 million to create a grassroots ‘City of Football’ – working in one place to create a whole range of new opportunities to encourage more people to play football regularly and sharing the insight with the FA to help it grow the game. We will be inviting bids from interested cities in April.
The England Golf Partnership is losing £496,000, with Sport England challenging the sport to take radical action to stop the continuing decline in the number of people playing golf regularly. The money will be reinvested in new partners who can show how to make golf quicker, cheaper and less formal.
Whilst numbers have been declining in cricket, badminton and rugby union over the last year, the England and Wales Cricket Board, Badminton England and the Rugby Football Union have all put in place strong plans to turn things around. Those plans have been rigorously assessed, and we have good evidence they can deliver growth, so we are backing them with full funding for a further year. However, these three NGBs are being put ‘on notice’ that they need to grow the numbers of people playing their sport by December 2014, or they could lose 20 per cent of their future funding next year.
Although UK Athletics did not achieve its APS target in December, the number of people participating regularly increased and so no deduction has been made this year.