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Olympic Games

Volume 406: debated on Wednesday 4 June 2003

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To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport if she will make a statement on the effects of a successful London Olympic bid on the levels of sports lottery funding available for projects in the North East. [116579]

Preliminary assessments of the impact of Olympic Lottery games have been provided by Camelot, and reviewed by the National Lottery Commission. These estimates suggest that any negative impact on income to the existing good causes would be small—four per cent. for the remainder of the Camelot licence period, until 2009. It is possible that should additional funding be required the impact may rise to 11 per cent. between 2009–12. However, Olympic Lottery games have the potential to invigorate interest in the Lottery in general and in that way may benefit all the existing good causes.Decisions on lottery funding for specific projects in the North East and across the country will remain a matter for the distributing bodies, in the case of sport for Sport England.

To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport what assessment she has made of the need for an Olympic size swimming pool for the North East of England; and if she will make a statement. [116582]

In December 2001 Sport England made an assessment of swimming pool provision in the North East using their Facilities Planning Model. The Model provides an assessment of the relationship between the level of supply of pools required to meet the estimated demand from the population in a given area in the peak period. Analysis of the results found that the current supply of swimming pools could generally meet the existing demand from residents.The Amateur Swimming Association published their facilities strategy in December 2002, and highlighted the strategic need for one 50m community pool in each of Sport England's nine regions. At present the North East does not have a 50m pool, but I understand there are two Lottery proposals currently being considered for such a facility by Sport England.