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Grants and Funding


Sporting Capital Fund

06 October 2021/Categories: Grants_and_Funding

Loan funding is available to a wide range of incorporated organisations based and operating in England to deliver projects using sport and sporting facilities that generate sustainable revenue and deliver long-term community impact.

Fund Information

Funding body:
National Lottery Community Fund
Maximum value:
£ 150,000
Application deadline:
None specified


Sporting Capital administers the Sporting Capital Fund on behalf of the Big Lottery Fund and Big Society Capital which are providing the funding.

Objectives of Fund

Sporting Capital is a social investment fund operating with the objective of helping organisations that make a difference by developing people and communities through sport. The Fund provides loans that serve to support organisations to become financially sustainable by developing new, or retaining and expanding existing, revenue streams.

Loans are provided to help organisations, either now or in the future, to:

  • Deliver community-based services to meet the needs of local people, either using sport as a tool, or using a community sports setting to deliver services.
  • Have a sustainable business model that generates revenues through trading that support the organisation’s activities.

Value Notes

The Fund is investing a total of £3 million as loan funding of up to £150,000 - depending on the organisation. There is no lower limit but Sporting Capital does not expect to make loans of less than £10,000.

  • Loans are repayable over three to five years but, if needed, a repayment holiday of up to 12 months may be available, giving projects time to generate sustainable revenue before starting to repay the loan.
  • The interest rate is between 5% and 10% per annum. The rate of interest will depend on a number of factors including the impact applicants hope to deliver and how risky the investment is.
  • Investments will attract a one-off fee of 2% which will be netted off the investment on day one. For example, if an organisation borrows £100,000, it will receive £98,000 in its bank account on day one, with £2,000 being retained to cover the lending fee.
  • If planning permission is required to deliver a project, it must be granted before a loan can be approved.

Match Funding Restrictions

Projects will stand a much greater chance of success if most or all of the other funding required has been secured.

Who Can Apply

The Fund will only invest in community organisations that use sport, or a sporting facility, to deliver activities and services that generate sustainable revenue and deliver impact.

Incorporated organisations are eligible to apply including:

  • Companies Limited by Shares.
  • Companies Limited by Guarantee.
  • Community Interest Companies Limited by Shares.
  • Community Interest Companies Limited by Guarantee.
  • Charitable companies.
  • Charitable Incorporated Organisations.
  • Community Benefit Societies.
  • Charitable Community Benefit Societies.
  • Cooperative societies.

To be eligible, applicants must:

  • Be based, and have a project that is based, in England.
  • Have, or want to develop, a business model that delivers sustainable revenue to help them deliver their ambitions and repay our investment.
  • Be an organisation that delivers, or is planning to deliver, community-based services to meet the needs of local people. And these services use sport, or are delivered using a community sports setting.
  • Plan to generate, positive social impact as one of the main purposes of the project.

Previous Success

Previous awards include:

  • Cycle Pathway CIC - redevelopment of Middleton Park golf course in Leeds into a cycling hub that meets the needs of the local community and wider region including a community building providing a range of facilities, including a café, social space, workshop and education facilities.


The following are not eligible for funding:

  • Charitable trusts.
  • Unincorporated associations.
  • Capital redevelopment, such as a new roof.
  • Individuals.
  • Organisations that advance political or religious objectives.

Eligible Expenditure

Funding can be used for a wide range of projects that use sport, or sporting facilities to benefit local communities.

Examples of eligible expenditure include:

  • Supporting the development of new or refurbishment of existing facilities.
  • Buying kit and equipment to help deliver activities.
  • Recruitment, training and deployment of staff and volunteers.
  • Equipment to support business functions, including finance, project management and governance.
  • Other operating costs, including working capital.

Organisations must have, or want to develop, a business model that develops sustainable revenue, eg investment to support a community café (new revenue stream). This could include café kit and equipment, training deployment of new staff and volunteers, management support to get the café operating and funding towards marketing the new venture.



How To Apply

Applications can be submitted at any time.

Guidelines and an online application form are available on the Sporting Capital website.

Applicants will need to register before beginning their application.

It is anticipated that the minimum amount of time from application to investment will be 10 to 12 weeks although most successful applications will take longer.

Useful documents & links

Useful Links

Addresses and contacts

For further information on how to obtain this grant locally, please contact the following:

  1. Funding Team
    Sporting Capital
    Vox Studios
    1-45 Durham Street
    SE11 5JH
    Tel: 020 3637 8232
    Email: [email protected]

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