Winter Survival Package of £300m announced for major spectator sports

25th Nov 2020

The government has announced a new Winter Survival Package of £300m to help national sports governing bodies and individual sports clubs impacted by the loss of revenue from spectators, due to coronavirus restrictions.

What is the Winter Survival Package?

The Winter Survival Package has been created by the Department for Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) and will be distributed by Sport England. The funds will provide support specifically to professional spectator sports. Read on if you think your club may be eligible, or head to our funding & finance page for alternative funding options.

The government recognises that coronavirus restrictions have greatly limited the ability for clubs and governing bodies to generate revenue through spectator attendance, severely impacting cash flow, in turn impacting their ability to support grassroots sport.

The Winter Survival Package is therefore providing £300m of funding for clubs or governing bodies who have suffered significantly from these restrictions, focused specifically on revenue losses directly related to the lack of spectators attending matches or events during the pandemic.

Who is eligible for funds from the Winter Survival Package?

The Winter Survival Package is a solicited fund, meaning that it is not open for applications in the same was as Sport England’s funds for grassroots sport. Sport England state that “All of the relevant sports and organisations have been engaged throughout the process to determine their specific needs”.

Only these relevant organisations will then be able to submit an application, with the £300m distributed by an independent committee primarily as loans, with some grants offered based on individual organisations’ needs.

How will the money be split by sport?

The Department for Culture, Media and Sport, who are behind the package, have proposed the following breakdown of funds by sport:


  • National League Steps 1-2: £11m
  • National League Steps 3-6: £14m
  • Women’s Super League & FA Women’s Championship: £3m

Rugby Union

  • Rugby Football Union: £44m
  • Premiership Rugby Clubs: £59m
  • Championship Rugby Clubs: £9m
  • Rugby Clubs below Championship level: £23m

Rugby League

  • Rugby Football League: £12m


  • Lawn Tennis Association: £5m


  • England Netball: £2m
  • Super League Netball: £2m


  • Basketball England: £1m
  • British Basketball League clubs (inc. Women’s): £3m

Additional funding will also be delivered to Horse Racing (£40m to racecourses), Motorsport (£6m to major circuits), Ice Hockey Elite League (£3m), Badminton England (£2m) and the Greyhound Board of Great Britain (£1m).

If you’re an eligible club, you can find out more about the fund on the Sport England page here:


I’m not eligible, what other funding options are there?

Last month Sport England announced their Return to Play Fund, which will deliver a total of £16.5m in funding to groups, clubs and organisations in the sport and activity sector who have been hit by the coronavirus pandemic.

The fund is split into three separate strands (£10m for small grants up to £10,000, £5m for Community Asset grants up to £50,000 and £1.5m for Active Together crowdfunding matched grants up to £10,000).  The Return to Play fund is aimed at helping organisations to get back on track, in turn helping to get people active in the coming months as restrictions ease.

You can find out more about the Return to Play fund on the Sport England Website.

If you’re not eligible for Sport England funding, there are alternative finance options available for schools, clubs and leisure centres.

You may be eligible for finance options such as Sports Operating Leases or Hire Purchase Agreements.


Sports Operating Lease

Sports operating leases are particularly popular for schools and allow you to spread the cost of investing in your new sports facilities. Benefits include reduced upfront costs, fixed payments, reduced tax payments, and the option to reclaim VAT.


Hire Purchase Agreement

Available to sports clubs, hire purchase agreements allow you to spread the cost of your new sports facility over time. Benefits include reduced upfront costs (variety of low deposit options), full ownership on final payment, deferred payment options, and tax relief via annual capital allowances.

To find out more about either of these options or alternative financing available to you, please read more on our Funding & Finance page or call our experts on 01635 34521.

Funding and finance advice from S&C Slatter

We’ve worked with clients who have utilised a variety of funding options to bring their sports construction projects to life. With 30 years’ experience in the design, construction and maintenance of sports facilities, we have a large network of funding partners and contacts.

View our sports funding and finance case studies to see a selection of projects funded by operating leases or framework funding.

Contact our team to talk to us about your plans and receive advice and guidance on what funding options may be best suited to you.