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Sport And Recreation

Volume 934: debated on Monday 27 June 1977

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asked the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland what sums of public money were expended in the district councils areas of Omagh, Strabane, Londonderry and Limavady in 1975–76 and in 1976–77 on sport and recreation; which games and forms of recreation benefited; by how much for each form of recreation or game; and what is the estimated number of persons in each council area actually participating in each form of recreation or game so benefiting.

, pursuant to his reply [Official Report, 3rd June 1977; Vol. 933, c. 572–3], gave the following information:Only since 1st April 1976 have records been kept by the Department of Education for Northern Ireland, which is responsible for grant aiding sport and recreation, of capital expenditure on a district council basis. To provide the requested details for the year 1975–76 would require disproportionate effort. For recurrent expenditure on sport and recreational facilities the hon. Member is referred to the accounts of the respective district councils.

Capital expenditure on sporting and recreational facilities by the Omagh, Strabane, Londonderry and Limavady District Councils in the 1976–77 year was as follows:

Limavady£200,324
Londonderry£463,398
Strabane£249,203
Omagh£43,212

Facilities provided cater for a wide range of activities, including athletics, swimming, football, hockey, and various indoor sports. Other facilities provided were of the children's play area type. It is not possible to specify the amount of capital expenditure by game or sport, or to state the number of participants in each activity.

asked the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland what support from public funds other than that made available by councils is available to sport and recreation in Northern Ireland: what was the cost of such support in financial years 1975–76 and 1976–77; and which games and forms of recreation benefited and by how much.

pursuant to his reply [Official Report, 23rd June 1977; Vol. 933, c. 572–3], gave the following information:Support from public funds is available from several Government Departments for sport and recreation purposes in Northern Ireland. The amounts paid by Government—including grants to district councils—in the financial years 1975–76 and 1976–77 for the provision of sporting and recreational facilities were as follows:

1975–76£4,778,000
1976–77 £5,169,000

This expenditure was towards the provision of facilities catering for a wide range of sporting and recreational activities and it is not possible to state by how much each activity benefited.In addition, rates relief of 35 per cent, is allowed on all playing fields, and this concession was extended to a wide variety of indoor games from 1st April 1976. The approximate cost in 1975–76 was £65,000 and in 1976–77 £80,000, but it is not possible to state the amount of concession for each sport.