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Sports Provision Major Projects Grant: allocation policy

This policy supports the Sports Provision Major Projects Grant.



Uttlesford District Council allocated funding in 31 March 2021, with 2 further tranches over the following two years. These are to be allocated to support enhanced sport provision in the district. The budget for 2023/24 is £54,000.

The target areas are respectively in the locality of Great Dunmow, Saffron Walden and Stansted Mountfitchet and the catchment areas for the projects should include communities around these centres.

Legal and budgetary framework

All grant decisions will be made based on the set of principles, set out in this policy, and within the agreed budget approved by council.

The council cannot guarantee to fund the maximum amount applied for, therefore organisations must ensure that they have procedures in place to cover the balance of funding required. The council will not pay a grant unless the organisation can demonstrate that the balance of the funding is available.

Projects must be delivered and funding claimed within a specified time period with clearly defined beginning and end dates. These should be set out in the application for funding. (Successful applicants should be prepared to commit to these dates in a funding agreement).

Applicants should demonstrate that funding from other sources is not paying for the same expenditure (double funding).

Work on the project must not have commenced, nor expenditure committed before an offer letter is received and funding agreement signed. Invoices should not pre-date the letter or agreement.

Grants cannot be paid retrospectively therefore any work commenced prior to acceptance of the grant offer will not be eligible for funding.

Funding will normally be paid after the work has taken place or via staged payments against agreed milestones. Copies of all invoices must be provided to support funding claims.

All successful applicants will be required to complete a post grant monitoring report

What types of projects can be funded?

Grant allocation for Sports Provision (Major Projects) will fall into 4 categories:

  1. Maintenance work and purchase of equipment for normal activities
  2. Upgrade to existing facilities and purchase of equipment which will allow greater or enhanced use of facilities
  3. Project development costs for major new provision projects
  4. Major projects requiring funding support greater than £54,000

How to apply

  • Applications are invited from sports clubs or other appropriately constituted organisations.
  • Applications must be made using the council's and that are available online on the council's website.
  • The application form must be completed in full. Incomplete application forms will be rejected.
  • A copy the organisation's signed constitution must be sent with the application form or within 7 days of submitting the application. If this is not received it may result in the application being declined.
  • Supporting documentation may also be requested prior to the application being fully considered.

Failure to supply all required documentation will result in the application being treated as incomplete.

Criteria for funding

Priority will be given to applications for projects and activities which:

  • are based in Uttlesford
  • enhance the quality of life for Uttlesford residents
  • increase involvement in the community
  • demonstrate the potential to be sustained in the future
  • have funding contributions from the applicant organisation's own funds and/or funding support from other bodies in place or promised
  • demonstrate a knowledge and understanding of their community
  • facilities that are accessible to the community

Funding considerations

In allocating grants, the considerations will include:

  • the percentage of funding generated by the applicant's own fund raising, including applications for grants from their sport bodies, and use of reserves
  • ownership or long-term tenure of the site
  • the availability of quotes or tenders
  • the number of current and potential future beneficiaries of the project
  • the ability to deliver the project within a reasonable timescale
  • access to the facility (such as free to the public, pay as you go, membership only)
  • evidence of community support
  • environmental improvements, such as reductions in energy and water consumption, and light spillage
  • provision of a maintenance plan

Who can apply

To qualify for a grant organisations must meet the criteria to:

  • provide value for money
  • be a voluntary or community organisation, registered charity or other not for profit organisation
  • have a set of audited accounts, or as a minimum an organisation bank statement, and are able to provide such information as the council reasonably requires in order to satisfy the council as to the organisations financial position and its need for the assistance requested
  • have a constituted management committee with a signed constitution
  • have appropriate safeguarding policies relevant to their organisation where children, young people or vulnerable adults are involved, which must include a requirement that staff / volunteers must be cleared with the Disclosure and Barring service
  • have their own bank or building society account with two signatories
  • have not already received a community grant within the current financial year

Grant conditions

All grants must be fully spent within the year from the date of approval unless agreed by the Director of Public Services in consultation with the Portfolio Holders for Sport and Finance, and on the costs and activities set out in the grant application.

Very minor changes may be agreed from time to time subject to the funding being used in line with the original application criteria. Any such changes must be applied for to the council and agreed in writing.

Organisations must notify the council of any changes in circumstances which affect their financial position throughout the period in which the grant monies are being used.

The grant must only be used for the purposes specifically stated in the application form, and should it be spent in any other way, without written approval from the council, the organisation may be asked to return some or all of the monies paid.

If the project is cancelled or only partially achieved, or if the organisation is wound up, any unused grant money must be returned to the council.

If the project involves work on land or a building, including refurbishment, the applicant must own the freehold of the land or building, or hold a lease that cannot be brought to an end by the landlord for at least 5 years.

If planning permission is required this must be in place before the grant application is made. The council may ask for confirmation that planning permission is not required, or that it is required and has been granted.

Organisations must be committed to and have policies on equalities and inclusion and in delivering the services or activity the organisation must not unlawfully discriminate, directly or indirectly against any of the nine protected characteristics.

All conditions under which the grant has been awarded, including any special conditions, must be met. Failure to do so could result in the organisation being asked to repay the grant monies to the council.

For audit purposes, records must be kept showing how the grant has been spent, along with any relevant receipts or invoices. In line with the council's retention policy and in line with General Data Protection Regulations all documentation relating to an application will be retained for seven years before being destroyed.

An officer of the council may visit the grant recipient from time to time to audit the information sources. The council may also request a review if it wishes to discuss the project or service development and delivery.

Decision making process

The grant applications will be considered by a panel consisting of the Portfolio Holder for Sport, Portfolio Holder for Finance, Communities Manager, Community Development Officer and Senior Health Improvement Officer.

Having assessed all applications a Recommendations Report will be prepared by the Portfolio Holder for Cabinet decision.

Organisations will be notified to inform them of whether they have been successful or not as soon as possible after Cabinet decision.

Complaints about any aspect of the Community Grant process will be dealt with under the council's Corporate Complaints Procedure.

Monitoring and review

Organisations must be able to participate in a monitoring process and provide monitoring information to evidence how the grant money has been spent and adherence to the conditions of the grant. This must include receipts or invoices and a written report of the project, activity or event, plus photographs if possible, on completion.

If organisations do not supply the required monitoring reports and supporting information in full and within the set time scale they may be asked to repay the grant funding to the council. Failure to comply with the conditions of this grant may be taken into account when considering any further applications for grant funding made by the same organisation in the future.

The council will periodically review all the grants it gives to organisations and individuals to ensure they meet the council's corporate priorities.