Sport England has established a £200,000 ($297,000/€272,000) emergency flood relief fund aimed at helping to restore pitches and facilities which have been damaged by storms which have hit the country.
People can apply for National Lottery funding to help get facilities back running as quickly as possible, with the funds available to sports clubs, local authorities and other community sports organisations.
It is hoped that football, rugby and cricket pitches, water sports centres, pavilions, changing rooms and floodlights across the flood affected areas can be repaired.
“We appreciate that sport isn’t a major priority when people’s lives, homes and businesses are at risk,” said Jennie Price, Sport England’s chief executive.
“But once communities are starting to get their lives back to normal, being able to use their local pitch or sports club as usual can make a real difference.
“By launching this fund quickly to help with clean up and repair costs, I hope we can give people affected by the floods one less thing to worry about.”
Financial support can be provided in as little as three weeks, Sport England claim, with grass pitch restoration and clubhouse decontamination and repairs among the work which will typically be included as part of the fund.
Replacements for damaged or broken electrical systems, steam cleaning and de-silting of drains are also work that is expected to receive funding.
Facilities in the counties of Cumbria, Lancashire and Northumberland have suffered the worst damage, with clubs, charities and similar organisations encouraged to go to the Sport England website to apply for up to £5,000 ($7,400/€6,800) of emergency funding.
“The floods have had a devastating impact on communities and the primary focus for many will be to try to get back to normality,” said British Sports Minister Tracey Crouch.
“This fund is just a small part of our wider package of support for affected areas – by helping restore sports facilities to their former glory, it will help to slowly rebuild the lives and everyday routine of these communities.”
Sport England previously launched a fund in early 2014 after flooding affected communities throughout England, with more than 250 sports facilities receiving assistance.