Government reveals sport reforms in bid to reverse falling participation figures and save Olympic legacy

Joe Hall
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The Premier League has committed to investing £100m a year in grassroots football (Source: Getty)

The government has unveiled a new strategy for sport in the UK, designed to rescue stagnating participation numbers following the Olympics.

Governing bodies such as the Football Association (FA), the England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) and the Rugby Football Union (RFU) will come under pressured to get more primary school children playing their sport.

Sports minister Tracey Crouch has spent recent months consulting relevant bodies on how to usher in reform at grassroots level.

As part of the plans the Premier League has promised to donate £100m a year to grassroots football.

Sport England, the public body which invests over £300m a year in sport, will now stretch its focus from 14 year olds to children as young as five, and prioritise increasing national participation rather than developing existing athletes.

Read more: Government must trust grassroots to stop sport slump

Since the Olympics were staged in 2012, there has been a downward trend in participation numbers.

"At the heart of this new strategy sit five simple but fundamental outcomes," wrote Crouch in a document outlining the "Sporting Future" strategy.

"Physical health, mental health, individual development, social and community development, social and community development and economic development.

"It is these outcomes that will define who we fund, what we fund and where our priorities lie in future. It sets the pathway for sport and physical activity for the next decade and beyond."

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