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Our investment approach

A man bowls the ball during a local league cricket match

Alongside ensuring we both secure and maintain our financial resources over this period, the way we’ll distribute both government exchequer and National Lottery money to achieve what’s in this plan will be firmly rooted in our strategy’s three guiding principles.

These guiding principles are:

Investing most in those that need it most

We’ll weight our investment decisions towards demographic groups, or geographic areas, that need the greatest levels of support and experience the greatest levels of inequality.

This will apply across our entire investment portfolio, and within individual programmes and individual investments, to ensure more of what we invest goes to the people and places with the greatest need.

Finding the right blend of national and local action

We’ll find this blend through the investment we make into our long-term partners, through the work we do with national organisations to understand their role in places, by supporting the network of Active Partnerships so they take an even more fundamental role in our investment portfolio, by expanding our direct investment into places, by building on the success of our local delivery pilots, and by further enhancing the role of our capital investment and statutory planning work.

Working in a way that's simple as standard

To deliver on the commitments we’ve outlined in this plan, we’ve categorised our investment into four categories to show in a simple and easy to understand way how we’re allocating investment.

The four categories outlined in our third principle are:


Investment into the organisations with a crucial role to play in building our movement and delivering change. This investment recognises the unique role these organisations play in sport and physical activity, supporting them to do so effectively, to build capability and capacity to work locally, and to tackle inequalities.

We expect around 50% of our investment to be into partners.


Investment into places across the country, large and small. This investment will take what we’ve learned from our local delivery pilots to more places with greater need, combining that with our long-standing expertise in capital investment to support communities to engage in sport and physical activity.

We expect around 25% of our investment to be into place.

Campaigns and advocacy

Using our voice, our insight, our partnerships and our investments to make the case for sport and physical activity, to encourage people to be more active and to break down some of the barriers to activity.

We expect around 10% of our investment to be into campaigns and advocacy.

Open funding

Simplified access to our open funding, with a single point of entry so it’s easy to apply for anyone who wants to be part of the movement.

We expect around 10% of our investment to be into open funding.

Not every commitment we've made in this plan involves us investing money - but where it does, the above figures are how we'll channel it.

'Other' accounts for the remaining 5% and includes a mix of investments that we manage on behalf of others like School Games Organisers.

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