The British Basketball League (BBL) and its women’s equivalent, the WBBL, have had significant funding confirmed in the latest round of funding from the Sports Winter Survival Package.
This is the second tranche of funding to be announced from the Government’s £300 million Sport Winter Survival Package that is focused on helping those major spectator sports severely impacted by coronavirus restrictions survive the winter.
The funding package has allowed the BBL and WBBL to undertake the 2020/ 21 season, with the leagues playing consistently since early November behind closed doors, with the outcomes of the BBL and WBBL Cup Finals, already determined. In addition, the respective Championship campaigns are already providing evidence they will be amongst the most competitive and exciting ever.
BBL Chairman Sir Rodney Walker said: “We were very pleased with the outcome from our negotiations, which will go a very long way to sustaining the top flight of our great game, and to sustaining our associated community programmes.”
“We know the Government recognises the impact of basketball, and the work of many BBL WBBL Clubs, through their Foundations and Community Interest Companies, goes well beyond sport. These activities by our Clubs go to the heart of the challenges faced by our young people in our disadvantaged communities, including related to physical activity, healthy eating, education related, social cohesion and mental health.”
“This support will be very important in sustaining these programmes when the Covid pandemic is behind us. The BBL would also like to thank the hard work by various DCMS and Sport England staff, who we know worked tirelessly to get to a position that the funding provided could be properly justified.”
Culture Secretary Oliver Dowden said: “We are committed to helping our treasured sports through these challenging times. And today’s announcement is more evidence of our support for them.
“This targeted funding will enable sports to keep playing and inspire many more stars of the future.”
Chair of the independent Board, Sir Ian Cheshire said: “Following thorough conversations with each party to assess their individual needs, the Independent Board is pleased to be able to confirm a substantial package of survival funding for netball, badminton, basketball and women’s football, totalling over £10 million.
“For those confirmed as recipients of support as part of this second tranche, this funding is vital in helping keep their respective clubs and leagues operational at this time.”