- Sport England continues to support rugby union
- Funding will help to grow grassroots game over the next four years
Photo: RFU Archive
The Rugby Football Union has welcomed the Sport England announcement of £20m funding for the next four years.
Announcing its funding investment for the next four-year period 2013 to 2017, Sport England pledged to invest £493m in 46 sports, including rugby union with a focus on the development of the grassroots game and increasing participation levels.
The RFU will receive funding of £20m over the four-year period, of which £15.25m will be awarded to Participation and Growth, including a Capital Programme of £3.25m. The remaining £4.75m will be invested in Women’s Talent Development.
RFU Chief Executive Ian Ritchie said: “We welcome this significant investment by Sport England and their continued support for rugby union, which has proved to be vital in helping us to develop the game at all levels.
“We are confident that our initiatives will deliver positive growth of the grassroots game and an increase in regular participation in rugby. Further development of our touch strategy and work in colleges and universities will place us in a strong position to broaden the appeal of rugby in all its forms.”
He continued: "The funding we have been awarded reflects the realistic plans that we submitted to grow the game in the next four years, especially in the period around the Rugby World Cup in 2015.”
Sport England’s Director of Sport, Lisa O’Keefe said: “Rugby union has a real opportunity in the build-up to the 2014 Women's World Cup and hosting the 2015 World Cup to galvanise people’s enthusiasm for the game. We are delighted to be working with the RFU to turn that interest into regular participation by investing in clubs, colleges and others to provide opportunities to play the sport.”