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Lords to debate football’s “economic and cultural contribution”

This is a story from the FSF archive – the FSF and Supporters Direct merged to become the FSA in 2019 – so this page may contain hyperlinks that do not work and/or have missing files. Our archived pages are not maintained and will not be updated.

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The Vice President of the UK Sports Association, the Chairman of Kick It Out and the Vice President of the Football Conference will debate the international economic and cultural contributions made by football to the UK, in the House of Lords tomorrow (Thursday 25th July, 11.30am).

Lord Bates (Conservative), who tabled the debate and will speak first, said: “There is no doubt that English Premier League football brings in a huge amount of money to the UK.

“VisitBritain announced in October 2012 that 900,000 foreign football tourists visiting the UK spent a substantial £706million – or £785 per fan – around £200 more than the average spend for a visitor to the UK. And this is on top of the £1billion plus that the Premier League and its clubs pay in tax each season.

“What people might not be aware of is the contribution that the Premier League makes internationally, through cultural organisations such as the British Council. Their partnership project, Premier Skills, has delivered a tremendous impact in 21 countries across Asia, Africa and the Americas in the six years that it has been running.

“Since 2007, Premier Skills has created training opportunities which have benefitted 2,300 grassroots coaches and referees who in turn have reached more than 400,000 young people. 6,000 teachers have received face-to-face training and there have been 3.5million views of the online English materials.

“I hope that this debate highlights the excellent national and international contributions made by the English Premier League, in both an economic and cultural way.”

Members scheduled to speak include:

  • Lord Addington (Liberal Democrat), Vice President of the UK Sports Association;
  • Lord Faulkner of Worcester (Labour), Vice President of the Football Conference and trustee of the Football Conference Community Trust;
  • Lord Pendry (Labour), President of Football Foundation Ltd;
  • Lord Ouseley (Crossbench), Council Member of the Football Association and Chairman of Kick It Out; and
  • Baroness Young of Hornsey (Crossbench), former Chairman of an EU Committee that conducted an inquiry into grassroots sports. 

Baroness Garden of Frognal (Liberal Democrat) will respond on behalf of the Government.

Thanks to UK Parliament for the image reproduced under CC license.

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