Playing pitch calculator

A tool to help estimate the demand for the use of playing pitches by a new population

The Playing Pitch Calculator can help local authorities estimate the demand that may be generated for the use of playing pitches by a new population.

The purpose of the calculator is to assist the development and implementation of a playing pitch strategy (PPS). It looks to provide a consistent ‘starting point’ to estimating the demand from a new population which can then be refined locally as appropriate.

The calculator, which was formerly an Excel spreadsheet-based tool, has now been updated and is available via the Active Places Power (APP) website.

As was the case with the previous Excel version, the calculator is available to local authorities who have a robust and up to date playing pitch strategy in place, or are in the process of developing or updating one.

Its move to APP continues our focus to consolidate tools and reports within a single platform.

Placing the calculator on APP will also help to develop and share any future updates, ensuring users have access to the latest version. 

Registration is required to access APP and therefore the calculator. If you are already registered you will also need to email us at planningforsport@sportengland.org to request the calculator being added to your list of available reports on APP.

If you are not already registered, you can register for free here.

How do I use the calculator to generate results?

Guidance on how to work through the calculator, including what information to enter, can be found within the guide tab on the right-hand side of the calculator within APP.

Once results have been generated, the user is able to download a detailed guide which provides further information on the calculator, including how its results can be used and how the results are calculated.

What can the calculator be used for?

The calculator can be used to inform:

  1. The development and/or update of a PPS by helping to estimate the demand from:
  1. overall population growth in an area to feed into the assessment of future demand
  2. the population of individual development proposals (e.g. an urban extension) to feed into any scenario testing at the strategy development stage
  1. The implementation of a PPS by informing discussion, alongside the PPS itself, on the demand that may be generated by a proposed residential development (at the pre-application and planning application stages) 

What shouldn't the calculator be used for?

The calculator shouldn’t be used to:

  1. Estimate the demand generated by the total population of an area e.g. the current or future total population of a local authority area. It should only be used to help estimate the demand that may be generated from a new ‘additional’ population. For example, if the total population of an area is currently 100,000 and is projected to increase to 110,000 over the period a PPS is looking at, the calculator should only be used to help estimate the demand that may be generated from the additional population of 10,000 and not the 110,000. The demand from the existing 100,000 population and the extent to which this is met should be assessed as part of the assessment work which feeds into a PPS. The demand from the current population can then be put alongside the demand that may be generated from the additional 10,000 population when informing the development of a PPS and action plan.
  1. Inform how the demand generated from an individual development should be met where a robust and up to date playing pitch strategy is not in place. The calculator requires information from a robust and up to date PPS e.g. number of teams (and members for junior hockey). Also, the calculator only provides an estimate of the likely demand for the use of playing pitches and does not suggest how the demand should be met or the level and nature of provision that should be provided. Its results should be looked at alongside a robust and up to date PPS to determine the most appropriate way of meeting any estimated demand.