6th February 2017
Image: England Handball CEO David Meli
England Handball has expressed it delight after it was announced it will receive National Lottery and Government funding from Sport England of £1.415 million for the period 2017-21.
The amount is an increase of more than £260,000 on the award made for the 2013-17 period, and includes £150,000 for England Handball’s talent programme.
England Handball CEO David Meli said: “Handball is in a good place and this funding will ensure the sport can continue to develop at the pace of the last four years.
“A key success area for us has been the education sector. The number of teams entering our National Schools competition has increased from 25 in 2009-10 to 1,400 in 2016-17. The British University Championships has grown from 24 teams in 2012 to 70 registered for this season.
“We have also seen fantastic growth in our under-18 competition in which, like our Under-16 competition, the quality gets better year-on-year.
“The club system is flourishing, while we have also developed an adapted version of the game called Try Handball.”
Meli was also delighted with the funding allocated to England Handball’s talent programme.
He added: “Our talent pathway is already bearing fruit, an example being Josh Da Silva who has joined top-division Portuguese club AC Fafe. There is a real talented generation coming through and the funding allocated for this area is very welcome.”
“Under our new strategy we see ourselves as the growth engine for the sport in England. Through our expertise, insight and knowledge, we will work with a range of partners to provide the opportunity for anyone to be part of the handball community. This will be an efficient way of continuing the growth of the sport.
“Handball is the most exciting, high scoring, action packed team sport that can be played anywhere by anyone.
“We want everybody to have the opportunity to be part of the excitement.”