Sport & active recreation

Lee Valley Regional Park offers everything from adrenalin charged white water rafting to some of the most precious open spaces in the capital, from the chance to ride the London 2012 Olympic velodrome to getting away from it all with miles of walking, running and cycling routes.


Our Sport and Active Recreation Team strives to create sustainable opportunities for people to use the whole park to get and stay active, in both traditional and untraditional settings.

In order to achieve Lee Valley Regional Park Authority’s vision to continue to be a world class leisure destination our team has the following mission:


“A park that delivers a range of high quality sport and recreation opportunities to increase participation and enrich the lives of our communities.”


The role of our team is to facilitate these opportunities, whilst ensuring they’re available to the widest possible audience in every corner of the park’s 10,000 acres.


Our wider Sport and Leisure Team is made up of two further departments; Events and Youth and Schools. Both actively support and enhance the delivery of the team’s strategic objectives through the delivery of their own portfolio of events, programmes and initiatives.


Our strategy

Our Sport and Active Recreation Team has a 2019 - 2023 Strategy which outlines the direction for our team. The strategy has six strategic areas which have been developed with extensive national, regional and local insight. This ensures that the work of our team aligns with the priorities of Sport England, Public Health England and NHS England, as well as other regional partner objectives.

Strategic area one: Workforce
Ensure our workforce has the right skills to engage with our diverse population and is more representative of the regional community we serve.

Strategic area two: Widening access
Ensure all sections of our diverse regional community are given the opportunity to take part in sport and active recreation in the park, regardless of age, background or level of ability.

Strategic area three: Physical and mental wellbeing
Improve the wellbeing of our regional community through a range of sport and active recreation opportunities.


Strategic area four: Partnerships
Work with regional partners to develop sport and active recreation opportunities throughout the park attracting new and a wider range of diverse users to the park.

Strategic area five: World class venues and major events legacy
Through a range of engagement programmes, facilitate regional access to sporting venues and events across the park to fully maximise event legacy and thus attract diverse/new regional communities to the park.

Strategic area six: Continuous improvement
Enhance our work by measuring and evaluating impact of all programmes, using insight to plan for the future, offering excellent value for money and harnessing the power of technology.

Orienteering in River Lee Country Park with the Youth and Schools team

Community Access Fund

Lee Valley Regional Park Authority’s Community Access Fund aims to support community groups and charities by offering free access to our venues and services to organisations that engage with hard to reach communities.


Who can apply

You can apply if your organisation is a not-for profit, registered charity, voluntary/community organisation or company. Please note our Community Access Fund will not fund traditional sports clubs. Your organisation must also be based in the Authority’s funding region of London, Hertfordshire or Essex.


How to apply

Please complete our expression of interest form.


What will we fund

The fund can cover activity costs, including the hire of Lee Valley Regional Park facilities and coaches/instructors, typically up to the value of £1,000. This can include one off visits to a venue and programmes up to six weeks in length.


Funding requirement

Successful applicants are required to complete relevant monitoring and evaluation forms provided by Lee Valley Regional Park Authority.


Active Communities
Grant Scheme

Active Communities Grant Scheme aims to support longer term projects that align to the six strategic areas of the Sport and Active Recreation Strategy.


Each application will be assessed against the following criteria, of which all three must be met: 

  • Projects that engage inactive and less active people in increasing their activity levels

  • Projects targeted at groups underrepresented in sport and physical activity – females, ethnic minorities, disabled people and older people of 50+

  • Projects that commit to showing they can demonstrate an impact on their participants by use of Lee Valley Regional Park Authority’s impact forms as applicable

Who can apply

Not-for profit organisation, registered charity, voluntary or community club or organisation or company can apply. We will also accept applications from traditional sports clubs, subject to the project in question meeting the above criteria. Your organisation must be based in the park’s funding region of London, Hertfordshire or Essex.


How to apply

Please complete our application form.


What will we fund

Grants can be used to cover activity costs, including coaches and facility hire, project coordination costs (officer time) and coach education/training. Typically, we will award grants up to the value of £10,000. We will not usually fund more than 50% of a project’s total cost.


Funding requirement

Successful applicants are required to complete relevant monitoring and evaluation forms provided by Lee Valley Regional Park Authority.

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BMX cyclist at sunset at Lee Valley VeloPark

Partnership working

Our Sport and Active Recreation Team engage with a number of partners from across the public, private and voluntary sectors. Strategically we work with a vast array of organisations, including Sport England, whom we have a number of Lottery Funding Agreements with.


We also aim to support all 56 Local Authorities across London, Hertfordshire and Essex and we do this through our extensive network of partnerships, particularly with County Sports Partnerships and National Governing Bodies of Sport.


If your organisation has similar strategic priorities and would like to discuss the potential of working collaboratively, please contact us.


Case study

Island House Community Centre

“Without the Lee Valley Regional Park Authority Community Access Fund our young people would never have experienced this life changing project”.


“The weekly programme of ice skating, tennis and water wipe-out was an opportunity for young people at Island House Community Centre to engage with new sport activities, increase their physical activity levels and have fun with their peers. Without the ring fenced funding, many of the young people would simply not be able to afford to attend these facilities or have the social structures and relationships to-do so.


The young people enjoyed the experience so much that they encouraged their friends to join Island House Community Centre so that they would be able to also take advantage of these opportunities. The centre’s involvement contributed to reducing social isolation and bringing young people together. The senior youth worker at Island House referenced how it inspired a handful of young people to subsequently start thinking about job prospects in the sporting field as a result of their experience.


The participants were equally as positive, a 15-year-old boy stated it had been “the most fun I have ever had”, explaining how being active and taking on opportunities to learn new sports “helps me to be happy and a leader"".