With Wimbledon and the Olympics just around the corner, Nottinghamshire County Council is playing its part in a special summer of sport by inviting sports clubs and talented athletes to apply for funding from its Sports Fund.
The Sports Fund aims to help talented individuals overcome the financial barriers associated with being an international level athlete, as well as helping local clubs to encourage more people to get involved in sport and recruit and develop new and existing coaches and volunteers.
Coun Joyce Bosnjak, chairman of the grant aid sub-committee at the council, said: “Our Sports Fund grant schemes create opportunities for people to take part in sport at a grass-roots level and provide essential support to our most talented athletes, whose success inspires others from throughout the county.
“The council has a proud record of supporting both sports clubs and individuals over many years, which has contributed towards the amazing success enjoyed by Nottinghamshire’s sportsmen, women and teams in recent times.
“I am proud that the council continues to value sport and play an important role in helping local athletes and clubs succeed.”
The sports fund can provide grants of up to £400 for individuals classed as ‘talented athletes’ who have represented their country in a sport recognised by Sport England within the last eight months and/or are ranked in the top five nationally in their age group
To apply go to www.nottinghamshire.gov.uk/talentedathletes
Also, grants of up to £2,000 over two years are available for club development projects to help increase the number of people taking part, recruit and develop more volunteers and contribute to recognised qualifications for coaches.
To apply, go to www.nottinghamshire.gov.uk/clubdevelopment
The closing date for applications is 5pm on Monday, August 1.
Talented athlete grants can be for a variety of uses, including specialist coaching, competition entry fees for individuals or facility hire and extra equipment for clubs.
Previous recipients of funding from the council have included gymnasts Sam Oldham, Becky Downie and Ellie Downie, swimmers Ollie Hynd and Charlotte Henshaw and Paralympians Richard Whitehead and Sophie Wells.
One of the recipients of a grant last year was footballer Ashleigh Plumptre (pictured top) of Notts County Ladies.
Ashleigh, who is from the county and has already represented England at under-17 and under-19 level, commented: “The funding provided a huge benefit to me.
“Whether I’m training or attending strength and conditioning or physio clinics, it’s seven days a week, so the grant helps with the financial burden, especially transport costs, nutrition and equipment.
“It means I can focus on developing as a player.”