London Marathon Charitable Trust has announced its first UK-wide funding programme, aimed at protecting open spaces and tackling physical inactivity across the UK.
The programme is an Active Spaces partnership between The London Marathon Charitable Trust and Fields in Trust, with £675,000 set aside by the Trust for 2017/18 to safeguard 50 green spaces. The funding will be used to protect these spaces in perpetuity from development, with each site also awarded a grant of up to £5,000 by the Trust to fund programmes that inspire the local community to get active.
In addition, England, Northern Ireland, Scotland, and Wales will each see one site that demonstrates the most significant impact receive a major grant of £25,000 for their activation programme.
Landowners and communities across the UK can apply online to protect a site and secure funding for programmes. Sites will be selected for support following an assessment of the proposed activation programme.
This is the first time the Trust has worked nationally. To date its grants have been to projects in areas where London Marathon Events organises events – primarily in London and Surrey. The London Marathon Charitable Trust has now made the decision to launch its first UK-wide programme to reflect the fact that participants in events organised by London Marathon Events come from all over the UK.
Sir Rodney Walker, chairman of The London Marathon Charitable Trust, said:
“Since 1981, The London Marathon Charitable Trust has funded a huge range of projects in London, Surrey and other areas where London Marathon Events Ltd has organised events. Participants in those events come from all over the UK and we feel now is the right time to make funding available to every community to safeguard much-loved local parks and green spaces and inspire more people to lead a more active lifestyle and increase the number of people regularly taking part in sports and physical activities. “
Helen Griffiths, chief executive of Fields in Trust, added:
“We believe the best way to protect our green spaces is for communities to get out and use them; this programme will activate new groups of users to enjoy local parks and playing fields. We will identify sites well loved by their communities and protect these spaces forever. The associated activity on site can help catalyse a local community to use their recreational space and get active.”
The programme opened for applications on 22nd May, with a deadline for the first round of 7th July. Information on eligibility criteria and how to apply is available on the Fields in Trust site.
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