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Sports Think Tank - New Government Takes Shape

"A sports think tank would be a great legacy from the 2012 games, enabling future generations to benefit from long term, well researched, and evidence-based sports policy making in the UK" Seb Coe

Sports Think Tank

Sports Think Tank

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New Government Takes Shape

Posted: Tue, 13 Jun 2017 09:21 by Andy Reed

New Government Takes Shape

Following the unexpected General election result Theresa May is in the process of forming a new government with support from the DUP. A Queens Speech is expected some time next week. I am sure not many of our readers expected to see a hung parliament if most of the Polls had been right. Clearly YouGov got something right.

So what does this all mean for existing Sport and physical activity policy?

The direction of policy will become clearer from next week when we have a better idea of how a minority government will work with the DUP. But as we know here at the Sports Think Tank we were underwhelmed by the prominence given to sport and physical activity in the manifestos. We accepted this was a product of the unique circumstances surrounding the calling of a snap election, but it does show when the big issues dominate just where we sit in priority terms!

From a personality perspective we have seen the retention of most Cabinet Members - including DCMS and Education. We did lose three important Ministers in key roles - Ed Timson, Rob Wilson, and Nicola Blackwood at Public Health.

We will be pleased to see Tracey Crouch retain the post of Sports Minister as another change of direction in sport policy would probably not be welcomed by the sector against a backdrop of continued uncertainty in government. But we will work with whoever takes up these posts.

The minority Tory government will carry on with a 'Supply & Confidence' agreement with the DUP which will mean that the Tory Whips and front benchers will have to listen carefully to their backbenches. It's likely we will see a very cautious government with few radical policies that can't gather support from its own Party.

We will be engaging early with the new teams and Ministers to ensure the evidence of good policy practise reaches their ears. As we are an independent Think Tank with no specific policy agenda to push on behalf of a membership we will continue to check and challenge the government, opposition and sport lobby organisations on what is the best way forward. There is still plenty for Ministers to tackle in sport and some big unanswered questions about funding. We look forward to crowd sourcing our good ideas from the sector so please continue to help us help deliver good practise.

PS We know Sport, Public health and schools are devolved matters, but given the new relationships between Wales, Scotland and NI in the new Parliament we will be keen to receive increased input from colleagues who wish to write about these issues.

Tags: Sports Policy, Dcms, Tracey Crouch