Wednesday 06 June 2012
The Football Stadia Improvement Fund (FSIF) has announced a number of changes, making it easier for clubs to apply for grants.
The FSIF, which is funded by £6m every year from the Premier League, is the country's largest provider of grants towards projects that help improve the comfort and safety of lower league football grounds in both the professional and amateur game.
These improvements range from new stands and turnstiles to floodlighting and improved provision for disabled supporters.
Key changes include an increase in funding levels from £150,000 to £250,000 for some clubs and an increase in the percentage of the total project cost that is available - up to 70% in some cases - which will be of particular benefit to the higher levels of the non-
Hospitality areas have been made eligible throughout the non-leagues, covering all types of food and drink outlets, from simple tea bars to function suites, in order to provide greater revenue generation opportunities.
"We want as many to benefit from the fund as possible"
- Richard Scudamore
Grants are also now available for items such as players' and officials' protected walkways, press seating, team dug-outs and pitch maintenance equipment, which were all previously ineligible.
Richard Scudamore, Chief Executive of the Premier League, said: "These changes are for the long-term good of football. It will be easier for clubs to get hold of funding.
"What that will hopefully mean is that more facilities will improve and more players will want to play and, just as important, more people will be able watch and generate valuable resources for their clubs.
"There is £6m there annually for people to access and we want as many to benefit from it as possible. Grassroots is fundamental to football because the wider the base the better it will be at the top.
"The English pyramid is the envy of the world and programmes like the FSIF will ensure that this continues to be the case."
Since it was launched in 2000, the FSIF has awarded around £100m worth of grants towards stadia improvement projects.
You can get more information on the FSIF via the dedicated area on the Football Foundation's website.
To download the FSIF eligibility criteria poster click here (opens as a pdf)