PlayZones Programme Workshop - November 2023

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Welcome team! Welcome team! Football Foundation — Grass Pitch Revolution



Investment priorities

Application process & Timeline

Key criteria


Playzone programme overview Targeted approach

Activation & Business plans

Next steps


o The Football Foundation is the Premier League, The FA and the Government’s charity. o We exist to improve grassroots football facilities. o The Foundation has invested more than £710m of the Partners’ funding over the past 20 years in to more than 17,000 projects. o The Government has confirmed additional funding of over £200m to football facilities 2022-25 o Our new investment plan strongly aligns the investment from all Funding Partners towards Uniting The Movement, delivering a new multi-sport approach and a unified focus on tackling inequalities.

Football Foundation — PlayZone Programme Workshop


Priority groups Investment will focus on: Women & Girls, Disabilities, Diverse Ethnic Communities and Lower Socio-Economic Groups. All projects will engage with these groups with at least 75% providing sustained outcomes. Equal access for girls Investment will ensure that every girl has the same opportunity as every boy to play football both at their school and local club. Targeted investment Investment will be priorities into communities that are most in need and where the greatest outcomes will be achieved. Community engagement Community engagement is fully embedded within our processes. Ensuring local groups are involved in project development, helping to tackle inequalities locally and inform the range of sports and activities at facilities.

Football Foundation — PlayZone Programme Workshop


o Football-led investment with a multi-sport benefit for at least 30% of investment (rising to 40%)

Facility type





Total 23-25

o Tackling inequalities within underrepresented groups







o Greater focus on recreational forms of football and other sport/activities, particularly through small-sided facilities

Changing facilities






Grass pitches












o Community Engagement embedded into our end to end application process for all facility types o Prioritising investment into communities with the greatest need

Football Foundation — PlayZone Programme Workshop


Our approach so far…

o Umbrella term to describe the different formats of the small-sided game; from teams and leagues to recreational and informal o Significant market of 13.1m people in England o Insight gathered over a number of years to understand the different formats, customer segments and their preferred facility types o Investment opportunities captured through LFFPs o This facility type offers a significant opportunity to tackle inequalities and provide multi-sport benefit o This is the facility type we know the least about. We commissioned further research to review existing insight and fill gaps in knowledge and design facility types reflecting the findings of that research o This research provided the key ingredients which enable small-sided and multi-sport facilities to succeed Football Foundation — PlayZone Programme Workshop


o One size does not fit all o The best community projects are designed and delivered in partnership with the community o Targeted groups are more likely to take part if they’ve been included in the development o It’s in communities, and organisations within them, where the inequalities specific to that area can be best understood, and where the best prospects of tackling them lie o For many of the communities we are trying to engage, we know that a recreational offer is important to reach the target audiences o We need to work differently with the communities meeting them where they are at, in a more bottom-up approach o Activation of the space is as important as the facility itself.

Football Foundation — PlayZone Programme Workshop


o Consortium approach – testing and success of consortium approach e.g. new partners working together, insight, input from community orgs etc. o Community engagement – testing toolkit and approach o Focus on priority groups and places – best results coming from clear focus on these ‘narrow the focus’ o Need for project management and community engagement support o Recreational football – confirms our insight that this form of game is popular with priority groups and key to increasing activity

‘We held a number of local conversations to gain insight for the application. The leadership was distributed across a number of partners and we gained some really good knowledge. This is the impact of a consortia approach.’ Active Partnership

‘Bringing a number of key organisations (whom deliver on a variety of key aims to support the city) together who would not normally join up to co-produce or collaborate.’ CCO

‘With cuts to funding it is impossible to work alone so working with the consortium members provides an opportunity to collectively make a difference.’ CCO

Football Foundation — PlayZone Programme Workshop

‘Having a diverse group from a variety of backgrounds and experience and looking at a bottom up approach rather than a top down. Allowing the project to be led by real people that it will have the greatest impact on.’ Local Authority Sports Development Team

‘We are a Volunteer Centre that works closely with community groups and volunteers in our local area, so can offer a different perspective for the project.’ CVS


Using the learning gathered to date, Sports Labs were instructed to engage key sports National Governing Bodies and produce some key design principles These design principles are based on recreational football plus at least one other sport Working collaboratively with the Basketball England, England & Wales Cricket Board, England Hockey, England Netball, Rugby Football League and Rugby Football Union to agree design requirements for recreational forms of their sports (e.g. surface types and line markings). These are reflected in the agreed designs.

Football Foundation — PlayZone Programme Workshop


PlayZones are modern, safe, and engaging facilities. We want this to be reflected in the design and settings for these facilities. PlayZones are designed for recreational football and at least one other sport. There are a range of facility types to meet the needs of different sports. Further design guidance will be shared later and these pitch designs are illustrative purposes only

Football Foundation — PlayZone Programme Workshop


Over240 PlayZones by 2025

Community-led facilities

Local opportunities

Floodlit facilities

including both new build and refurbishments of existing spaces

Community Engagement central to the programme and project development process

Helping local communities to play recreational formats of football, as well as participating recreationally in other sports and physical activities

Floodlit facilities that allow for community use day and night, all year round

Multi-sport benefits

Engage with priority groups

Targeted activation

Deliver multi-sport benefits and tackle inequalities in priority groups and places

Targeted approach to engage with lower socio-economic groups, women & girls, disabled people, ethnically diverse communities

Delivering activities that meet the needs of priority groups

Football Foundation — PlayZone Programme Workshop


To deliver our ambitious targets we have developed a programme based on delivery of multiple projects in local authority areas:

Targeting priority areas

Process developed to ensure a community-led approach

Football Foundation — PlayZone Programme Workshop

Findings of the community engagement will be used to inform the location and type of facility to meet the needs of the community

PlayZone programme

Focus on tackling inequalities and targeting priority groups


o Portfolio based programme, with projects being developed simultaneously in a local authority area and single application submitted to the FF o Project development driven by a consortium of local partners, with agreed Lead Organisation & Project Manager – upfront funding available to support project management and community engagement costs o Local partnership funding required – minimum 25% across portfolio o Multi-sport activation plan, business & operational plans will form part of a Full Application submission

Football Foundation — PlayZone Programme Workshop


o A group of partners working together to develop and drive the application for a PlayZone portfolio in your area. o The consortium identifies local priorities and engages with partners and community groups before submitting an investmentready portfolio o Each consortium should appoint a Lead Organisation, based on local geography, politics and delegation of responsibility. o Consortia should develop over the development of the programme to reflect local priorities.

Examples of consortium membership: Local authority

Sports and physical activity

Health and wellbeing

Parks and green spaces

Places and communities Active partnership Football partners*

Professional club community organisations

County FA

Prominent community groups Local charities Other sport partners* Housing associations Other sports, physical activity and wellbeing services

Football Foundation — PlayZone Programme Workshop


o Tackling inequalities, etc needs a collaborative approach

Football Foundation — PlayZone Programme Workshop

Identifying priority audiences and places

Appointing a project manager to coordinate the project

Managing relationships between local stakeholders

Seeking external expertise when required (e.g. technical, planning, design)

Consolidating, reviewing, and discussing existing insight for the local area

Ensuring community engagement is ongoing and remains central to the approach

Identifying multi-sport opportunities across local communities

Securing local partnership funding

Consortium responsibilities

o A key success factor for ATF has been the depth of consortia which reflect the local community and target groups


o Starting with the same areas shortlisted for our Active Through Football programme o Priority areas for investment with high concentrations of our target audiences o Greatest potential to meet the programme readiness factors o Opportunity to use and build on the established ATF local consortia to shape o Experience of undertaking community engagement through the FF o Opportunity to target priority places across the Local Authority area and not just ATF ‘place’

Football Foundation — PlayZone Programme Workshop


o Programme focused upon tackling inequalities within priority groups o Priority groups across the country face stubborn inequalities in activity levels and access to sports facilities o There are four priority groups facing the greatest inequalities: •

Lower socio-economic groups

Women and girls

Disabled people and people with long-term health conditions

Ethnically diverse communities

Football Foundation — PlayZone Programme Workshop

o We aim to offer safe and inclusive facilities that will help local communities overcome these challenges. o We want you to identify the priority groups and places in your local area who would most benefit from access to a PlayZone facility. o To ensure that your project meets the needs of these priority group you will need to engage with priority groups and involve them in the design of the projects. Our Community Engagement Toolkit is designed to support this.


Solicited approach to priority areas

Expression of Interest Lead organisation to commit to programme Request funding for Project Manager and Community Engagement (capped award)

1 FF Approval (formal review) Grant assessment and funding decision

Full Application Development • Business & operational plan • Activation plan • Technical design & information • Capital grant request & partnership funding


Football Foundation — PlayZone Programme Workshop

Further support required through LFFP refresh and enter programme in Phase 2

FF Approval (formal review) Capped grant award offer for CE & Project Manager

FF Approval (formal review) FF review and Technical Consultant appointment

Narrow focus & Community Engagement • Agree Project Management approach • Agree priority audiences and places • Agree approach to Community Engagement


CE Findings & Site Identification Community Engagement Report submitted to FF • What did CE tell you? • Which sites? • Which sports and what does it mean for surface/design?


FF Approval (informal review) CE plan review with FF Project Manager and approval to proceed with CE

TIMELINE Phase Three Stage 1 – EOI Submission

December 2023

FF approval

January 2024

Stage 2 – Narrow the focus & Community Engagement approach

January - February 2024

FF approval

February 2024

Stage 3 – Community Engagement findings & Site Identification

March - May 2024

FF approval

May 2024

Stage 4 – Full Application submission

June 2024 – December 2024

FF assessment & decision

January - March 2025

Football Foundation — PlayZone Programme Workshop


The following readiness factors will determine which phase of the programme best suits your local area and will identify the support you need in your application.

o Commitment o Capacity o Consortium o Clear local priorities o Partnership funding o Activation / workforce o Timings

Football Foundation — PlayZone Programme Workshop


o Lead Organisation should request access to the EOI form by emailing playzones@footballfooundation. o EOIs should be submitted by 15th December 2023 o Applications will be assessed based on readiness factors

Football Foundation — PlayZone Programme Workshop


CONSORTIUM Organisations currently included How do organisations represent the area, how have they been brought together and your lead organisation chosen?

LOCAL PRIORITIES • Who are the priority audiences you have identified to engage with? • How and why have these been selected, what informed this decision and what engagement has already taken place and what has this told you? • Which priority places have you identified and why?

COMMITMENT • Supporting statement to commit to the principles of the programme • Any additional information

PROJECT DEVELOPMENT GRANT REQUEST • Amount requested • Intended use

EOI Requirements

o Consortia should agree locally on a Lead Organisation



Key starting point for the Community Engagement process


Identify priority groups and places


Review existing knowledge and insights and develop conversations

4. Identify other local stakeholders 5.

Start with exiting strategies / established local priorities

6. Support from the Pitchfinder mapping tool. 7. Once the focused is agreed, you’re ready to start the engagement 8. Think about who is best placed to lead

Football Foundation — PlayZone Programme Workshop


 Partnership funding  Security of tenure & land ownership  Sinking funds  Implementing design guidance  Technical consultant appointment – plans for framework

Football Foundation — PlayZone Programme Workshop


o Community engagement findings should help to inform the plan o Key partners should be identified that can help to activate the facility o Activation could come through NGB programme delivery e.g. PL Kicks, FA Wildcats, Back to Netball, All Stars cricket, 3x3 Basketball o Key community groups may also be in a position to activate the space through recreational activity o Sessions must be bookable if we are to reach target audiences. There can be an element of open access, but a combination is required. o Programme wide technology solutions will deliver this.

Football Foundation — PlayZone Programme Workshop


o 5-year business plan required o Each PlayZone should have a sustainable business plan that considers each site individually or across the full portfolio o Overall programme aim of keeping the PlayZone running costs as low as possible o Sets out where responsibility for costs and maintenance lie o Factors such as site operation, ownership, surface type and activation plan will influence the business plan

Football Foundation — PlayZone Programme Workshop


Bring Bring your consortium together for local discussions






Decide if you wish to submit an Expression of Interest

Agree your Lead Organisation

Request access to the EOI form

Engage with Football Foundation and Sport England Officers for support and guidance

Submit EOI by December 2023

Football Foundation — PlayZone Grass Pitch Programme RevolutionWorkshop



Grass Pitch Revolution: New funding to improve football pitches

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