Over coming months Sport England will be announcing further investment in expanding place based working. It continues to advocate for the future of public leisure facilities at a place level. But successful system change will depend on investing in system leadership development to create the capacity, capability and confidence to facilitate the scale of culture change needed. Place working, pivoting public leisure and developing system leadership must be seen through one lens as a single integrated place based change programme.
We are not the only group of professionals wrestling with this system change journey. Although councils have been focused on place for some time, our health partners are only starting to engage in place working as they implement the new Integrated Care Systems. Like us the NHS, Social Care and Public Health have a fractured system that fails many people and does not function well together. Like us they have major funding problems: an infrastructure problem with ageing facilities. Often they are in the wrong place and delivering the wrong services: like us they have a workforce crisis in terms of capacity, skills and diversity. System change is now seen as the way forward for both sectors and if we are to become better partners we need to work better together and learn together in places.
Sports Think Tank Report October 2023 (PDF, 3.2 Mb)
Turning the rhetoric of Uniting the Movement into reality’ - What can we learn from the roll out of Integrated Care Systems (ICSs).