Badminton has received a welcome vote of support today as Sport England, the grassroots sports investment agency, showed confidence in Badminton England’s strategy to reinforce the grass-roots of the sport by awarding £7.25 million over the next four years.
Badminton England has declared themselves ‘delighted’ with the Sport England funding award which is the largest investment made into the core market plans presented by 26 of the national governing bodies to-date for the next funding cycle.
Badminton is firmly established as England’s sixth most played sport with over 478,000 people playing weekly, over 800,000 playing monthly and is the nation’s favourite racket sport.
The funding announcement will support Badminton England’s strategic direction to invest in the core of the sport: inspiring more young people to play, getting more coaches coaching, players competing and encouraging more volunteers to make badminton happen in clubs and organised activity across England.
The decision confirms support for new and innovative ways of working across the sector as Badminton England establishes closer relationships with leisure operators and providers to open up access to courts and improve the experience of existing players.
Julia Strong, National Game Director for Badminton England, said: “Badminton England is delighted by the funding decision made by Sport England. This level of funding shows significant confidence and commitment by Sport England in our strategy to grow badminton at a grassroots level going forward. Badminton has enjoyed a huge year with more people playing than 12 months ago.
“The success of badminton in winning an Olympic medal, exceeding all targets set in Rio, has inspired new players of all ages to get on court and discover badminton all over again.
“This funding decision really equips us to continue to make badminton even more accessible across England, supporting our focus over the next 4-8 years to reinforce the core infrastructure of our sport.”
Adrian Christy, CEO of Badminton England said: “Our ‘Discover Badminton’ strategy outlines a very clear vision on how we intend to get more people picking up a racket and getting the nation playing.
It is an exciting and ambitious blueprint on how we fully intend to continue to grow the game, offering a clear pathway from school hall to podium and building strong foundations for the core of our sport.
We are delighted that Sport England has seen the investable potential within it.“
Report courtesy of Badminton England