Today, Sport England announced that 4 million pounds of National Lottery funding will be invested into the organising of annual county multi-sport festivals, which are part of the School Games competition.
The Youth Sport Trust, who have been commissioned by Sport England to deliver the School Games and are supporting School Games Organisers to establish Local Organising Committees in their areas, welcomes the investment, as each LOC will have the support to deliver a truly remarkable sporting experience for young athletes.
Part of the School Games, a new approach to competitive school sport, the annual county festivals of sport are the third level of the School Games structure and are a culmination of the ongoing programme of intra-school and inter-school competition.
The funding will be invested in 46 Local Organising Committees, who will be responsible for organising and delivering the festivals, with each committee made up of representatives from local schools, County Sports Partnerships, young people, and national and local sports providers.
Secretary of State for Culture, Olympics, Media and Sport, Jeremy Hunt, said:
I'm delighted to hear this money has been approved by Sport England. I'm sure it will go towards ensuring the School Games competition is great fun and hugely rewarding for everyone involved.
Last July, Greater Manchester School Games was one of nine regions chosen to pilot these events. More than 1,500 young people from 200 primary, secondary and special schools competed in 11 different sports at some of Manchester's most prestigious 2002 Commonwealth Games venues. The event was supported by more than 250 student volunteers, who formed the School Games crew helping run and promote the event.
Richard Saunders, Greater Manchester Sport's Chief Executive, said: "The Greater Manchester School Games were an outstanding success bringing together so many volunteers and competitors in some of the country's best World Class sports facilities. With at least 60 festivals taking place, involving more than 100,000 competitors and nearly 14,000 young volunteers, the county festivals of sport are a key part of the School Games and will help ensure a lasting sporting legacy for young people beyond London 2012."