Badminton England joins letter to Prime Minister requesting energy relief Sport-rated
February 22, 2022
Badminton England today joined other national governing bodies and athletes in backing a letter to the Prime Minister calling for additional funding and prolonged energy relief during the ongoing cost of living crisis.
With power plans set to change in a few weeks, vital sports services could be at risk without additional government support.
Badminton England Chief Executive Sue Storey said: “Today, Badminton England joins national government bodies and individuals in supporting a letter to the Rt Hon Rishi Sunak MP, urging the government to provide energy relief to the sporting sector during the current energy crisis.
“The provision of sports and leisure facilities, mainly badminton courts, was a great challenge before the energy crisis. As the NGB, we are challenged by the government to grow our sport, and yet we are hampered by a lack of facilities – we NEED more places to play badminton, and we can’t wait to work together to address this critical issue.
“We implore you to provide this vital support to sports facilities and continue to provide critical energy relief in a sector that is already at a critical point.”
The letter sent to the Prime Minister on behalf of Badminton England, other NGOs and sports figures from a variety of different sports can be seen below.
Dear Prime Minister,
We write to you with an urgent plea to reconsider and provide the necessary support to the sport, recreation and physical activity sector during the current energy crisis.
Failure to do so will lead to an escalation of service reductions and closures at swimming pools, gyms, leisure centres, community facilities and clubs across the UK, affecting people of all ages and backgrounds.
Sports, recreation and physical activity are woven into the fabric of our communities, positively impacting the lives of millions of people across the country.
It creates positive experiences, memories, and habits that we cherish throughout our lives, and often provides us with shelter and resilience during the most difficult times, such as during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Millions enjoyed and were inspired by the Lionesses’ triumph at Euro 2022 and the recent Olympic, Paralympic and Commonwealth Games, which have given us a timely boost in terms of national pride.
If we’re going to continue our record of medal-winning success, then we need to grow the athletes of the future. But our facilities offer much more than that.
Well-maintained, accessible and affordable sports facilities, parks, playing fields, gyms, swimming pools and leisure centers contribute to a pride in place and are the front line in improving our physical, mental and social well-being, which is crucial given the significant pressures facing the NHS and welfare.
In addition, we know that many local schools, sports clubs, and voluntary and community organizations enrich our social fabric by providing a diversity of sports and recreation for many, regardless of age, ability, or background.
This strengthens the community and supports social cohesion in an increasingly digital world where many feel disconnected and alone.
However, the failure to identify tailored support for the sector (and schools running sports facilities) as part of the Energy Bill Discount Scheme will be the final straw for many facilities and services, especially for swimming pools.
Despite a positive agreement from the local government, the district and unit councils responsible for leisure services have little flexibility in their finances to provide the support the sector needs, given the increasing pressures on official services.
While the existing relief was welcomed, the end of support in April represents a cliff for these vital but power-hungry services.
Without national intervention, communities will see the loss of essential local services, including swimming lessons for children, which are vital to water security; multi-sport offers; mental health services; customized programs for senior citizens, ethnically diverse communities, women and girls, and people with disabilities; and long-term health programs including rehabilitation and cancer support
for those with musculoskeletal conditions and type 2 diabetes.
Similarly, the loss of accessible sports and leisure facilities will fuel the rise in obesity rates that the Government has pledged to tackle. he
missing swimming lessons and rising obesity rates pose a serious threat to life.
The closure of leisure facilities will also cause the loss of thousands of skilled and professional jobs and damage to local economies through the impact on suppliers and related businesses. We join in our call for the Government to work with the sector to:
- Reclassify pools as energy intensive as part of the Energy Bill Discount Program so they will have access to the highest level of discount on energy prices.
- Set out what tangible support you will provide to the broader sector, including gyms, leisure centres, sports facilities and clubs, to help navigate the energy crisis to 2023 so that service restrictions and facility closures can be minimized.
- Establish a “growth plan” for the sector by aligning the proposed new sports strategy with the spring budget to unlock the sector’s potential to support the economic, health, educational and social well-being of the nation.
You have the chance to be the first Prime Minister to harness the role of physical activity for the national good and drive improvements in our national health, reduce the burden on the NHS and drive economic growth through a happier and healthier workforce.
However, the current approach will inevitably result in the controlled decline of parts of the grassroots sport, recreation and physical activity infrastructure in this country, with incredibly damaging consequences for our national health and prosperity.
We implore you to act urgently to address this.
Chartered Institute for the Management of Sport and Physical Activity
Community Leisure United Kingdom
Association of Directors of Culture and Leisure
District Council Network
Local Government Association
Sports and Recreation Alliance
Sport for Development Coalition
Swimming Teachers Association
Youth Sports Trust
1Life Management Solutions
Leisure Services Alliance
Anytime Club United Kingdom
Aquatic Therapy Association of Chartered Physiotherapists
British Climbing Walls Association
Barnsley Premier Leisure
Baseball Softball UK
British American Football Association
British Association of Sports Trainers and Rehabilitators
british ice skating
British Mountaineering Council
British Paralympic Association
british show jumping
British Federation of Swimming Pools
British water skiing and wakeboarding
British wheelchair basketball
David Lloyd Leisure
Durham County Council
Leisure in Edinburgh
Edstart Sports Trainer
England and Wales Cricket Board
English Indoor Bowling Association
All Health and Leisure
First fitness clubs
United Kingdom goal ball
Diving Federation of Great Britain
Great Britain Outriggers
Great Britain wheelchair rugby
Hurlingham Polo Association
UK International Longevity Center
Junior Adventure Group
Karate Union of Great Britain
Laban International Guild
Leeds City Council – Sport
Leisure Network Solutions
Mosaic Spa and health clubs
move it or lose it
North Lanarkshire Council
UK Outdoor Industry Association
Parkour United Kingdom
Leisure in Parkwood
Sequoia Quartz Events
Richmond Charities Group
Royal Life Saving Society United Kingdom
Royal Yachting Association
rugby football league
rugby football union
Scottish Leisure Network Group
SLM Community Leisure Charitable Trust
SLM Health and Fitness
Snow sports England
snow sports wales
Sport for Confidence
Leisure in Stevenage
Association of Swimming Pools and Allied Trades
table tennis england
The Food Addiction Trainer
The Golf Foundation
the gymnastics group
Thomas Pocklington Trust
overall physical condition
Watford FC Community Trust
Sports Association of Wales
women in sports
Women’s Sports Collective
Rebecca Adlington OBE
Claire Cashmore MBE
Ed Clancy O.B.E.
James Cracknell OBE
Sharron Davies MBE
lucas green bench
Duncan Goodhew MBE
Anna Hopkins MBE
Adrian Moorhouse MBE
Matty Lee MBE
Steve Parry MBE
Keri Anne Payne
Scarlett Mew Jensen
Jonnie Peacock MBE
Karen Pickering MBE
Ellie Robinson MBE
Will Sach MBE
Andrea Spendolini Sirieix
Alice Tai MBE
Daley Thompson CBE
Dr Mike Tipton MBE
David Weir CBE
Professor Greg Whyte OBE