Barclays Spaces for Sports has made it two in a row after being awarded the Sport England Community Programme Award by Richard Caborn at the Sport Industry Awards.
The programme was recognised only days earlier for the Best Grass Roots Sports Sponsorship at the Hollis Sponsorship Awards.
The latest accolade came at the prestigious UK Sport Industry Awards in London, also attended by soccer star David Beckham who collected the Outstanding Contribution to British Sport award.
Launched in 2004, Barclays Spaces for Sports is a groundbreaking £30million partnership between Barclays, the Football Foundation and Groundwork. The three-year scheme focuses on creating sustainable sports sites in areas where such facilities are lacking.
It is the biggest ever investment in grassroots sport by a UK company and has been described by Chancellor Gordon Brown as a blueprint for public-private partnerships.
Now in its third year, Barclays Spaces for Sports has opened more than 130 sites and awarded more than 2,900 coaching packs to local communities up and down the country, giving over 360,000 disadvantaged people the opportunity to benefit from the programme. It is on track to deliver 200 sports sites and 3,600 coaching packs, benefiting over half a million people.
The Sports Industry Awards judges said: "The sheer size of the proect and the legacy it is creating turned the heads of the judging panel when debating the merits of this project."
Richard Caborn, Minister for Sport, said: "It was an honour to present Barclays Spaces for Sports with the Best Community Programme Award at the Sport Industry Awards. Barclays' impressive public-private partnership with the Football Foundation and Groundwork is opening up opportunities to play sport by delivering a lasting legacy of high quality community sports facilities, on time and to budget."
Tony Hawkhead, Chief Executive of Groundwork, added: "Not only does the programme help young people and adults boost their health and fitness, it also provides focal points for members of different communities to interact and come together. By investing in sports at grassroots level Barclays Spaces for Sports is also helping to build stronger neighbourhoods."
Matt Appleby, Barclays Sponsorship Director, said: "These awards reiterate Barclays Spaces for Sports position as a truly unique programme, which is positively recognised by Government and the sports sponsorship industry. Our aim is to make a real and lasting difference in communities across the country so it is a great honour to receive this Sport Industry Award for our involvement in grassroots sport."
Paul Thorogood, Chief Executive of the Football Foundation, said: "This award is recognition of the hard work and substantial investment that the Barclays Spaces for Sports partnership has put in over the last three years. The state-of-the-art sports sites are opening up opportunities to play sports and are breathing new life into communities across the country."
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