- National Teams
Sport England has announced Basketball England will remain on restricted funding until at least March following the publication of the Active People Survey (APS) results that show a decline in participation.
The news will be a blow to the governing body, who were hoping to join tennis, table tennis and fencing, as sports originally put on restricted funding who have now been offered a two-year investment through until 2017 after demonstrating good progress.
The APS results show the number of over 16 year olds playing basketball at least once a week has dropped from 154,700 to 131,100.
Just how much of a role the drop in participation figures plays remains unclear after Sport England have once again pointed to governance issues within the sport becoming a sticking point.
“There have been delays in clearing up outstanding governance issues which we need to resolve,” a Sport England spokesperson said to MVP.
“We need more time for them to go through those and resolve them. But we are trying to work with them to clear those up.”
A final decision on funding will be made in two months time following detailed analysis of their sport’s performance in the latest APS. If Basketball England fails to meet their agreed targets for increasing the number of people regularly playing basketball, they could see up 20% of their future funding invested in other organisations that can deliver their sport – as happened in January last year.
Basketball is not the only sport to take a hit – overall levels of sports participation in England are down two years after the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games, with swimming taking the hardest hit.
In the year period ending in October 2014, 125,100 fewer people did some kind of sport once a week for 30 minutes – bringing the overall number down from 15.7 million to 15.6 million.
Sport England announced a £1.18million bailout for British Basketball, the high performance body for basketball in the UK, in November to support the men, women’s, Under 20 men and Under 20 women’s teams from November 2014 through to March 2017.