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5 Jul 2024 | 10:10

A coalition of leading sport, recreation and physical activity bodies issued the following statement following the result of the 2024 General Election

We welcome the newly elected Labour Government and look forward to working with it to unlock the full potential of the sport, recreation and physical activity sector to achieve the five missions set out in its manifesto.

Prime Minister Keir Starmer faces an in-tray including a physical and mental health crisis across all ages, a stagnant economy, concerns about community safety and growing inequalities.

The sport, recreation and physical activity sector can play a major role in addressing these challenges and transforming the lives of millions by improving physical, mental and social wellbeing from childhood onwards; taking pressure off the NHS; creating a healthier, more productive workforce; fostering community cohesion; reducing crime and anti-social behaviour; and strengthening PE and school sport. 

Rather than an after-thought, the principle of getting more people, more active, more often must be embedded as a priority right across Whitehall. It needs to be led from the very top of Government and it needs to be backed by proper investment. 

We call on the new Government to pledge to make the UK the most physically active nation in Europe. This is no small task, but the prize is enormous: it would deliver an additional £3.6bn in economic growth, £1bn in NHS savings and £71bn in wellbeing benefits. 

The new Government has the opportunity to work with our sector, take the lead, and drive that change. The sport, recreation and physical activity sector stands ready to play its part in delivering a healthier, happier nation. 
Hitesh Patel, Executive Director of the Sport for Development Coalition, said:

With a new Government comes new opportunities and the Sport for Development Coalition looks forward to working with the Labour administration to embed sport and physical activity across relevant areas of Government policy with the shared ambition of tackling growing health and societal inequalities.

There are multiple returns on investment which can be achieved if we fully realise the wide-ranging benefits of sport and physical activity – the impact being made by the 400+ organisations spanning the Coalition’s UK-wide network, as reflected in the Coalition’s #OpenGoal framework, is evidence of this.

The National Sector Partners Group (NSPG) is comprised of the following organisations:

Active Partnerships
Chartered Institute for the Management of Sport and Physical Activity (CIMSPA)
Sport for Development Coalition
Sport and Recreation Alliance
Youth Sport Trust