The announcement that the percentage share of National Lottery income allocated to sport is to remain unchanged and is now fixed until 2019 has been welcomed today by UK Sport.
As the body responsible for the funding and support of the UK’s elite sports and athletes, as well as bidding for and supporting major sporting events in this country, maintaining National Lottery funding is a vital part of the organisation's ability to deliver sporting success.
The announcement was made by Tessa Jowell, Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, at the Lottery Monitor Conference in London. She confirmed that following a wide ranging public consultation earlier this year, support for the good causes would remain unchanged after 2009, and these arrangements would remain in place for ten years.
Following the transfer of high performance sport responsibilities from Sport England to UK Sport earlier this year, UK Sport now has 3.8% of the total funding allocated to the Lottery good causes – around £50 million a year, and 23% of the total sport allocation. This income is focused on providing our elite Olympic and Paralympic athletes with their Personal Awards – the contribution towards their sporting and living costs to enable them to take the time to train and compete successfully – and on the provision of funding to support the delivery of National Governing Body athlete support programmes.
Approximately £3.3 million a year is separately dedicated to UK Sport’s highly successful Major Events programme, which has helped to stage around 120 World, European and Commonwealth level competitions since 1997, including 19 awards in the past 12 months alone.
John Steele, Chief Executive of UK Sport, said: "I am delighted that we now have this certainty of funding not just through to 2012 but well beyond. National Lottery funding has made a massive difference to the ability of our sports and athletes to compete and win on the world stage and we need every penny to achieve our goals. Our task now is to continue to ensure that the money is well targeted, seeking to support those athletes and events most likely to succeed in what is always an increasingly competitive environment. The Lottery playing public love to see what their pound coin has bought – gold medals and world leading major events are two very compelling ways for that evidence to be provided."