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Local Pilot in manchester

Sport England are undertaking 12 Local Pilots nationally to test innovative approaches that can develop a blueprint to find solutions that increase activity levels.

This is a bold new approach for Sport England to build healthier, more active communities across England. Around £100 million of National Lottery funding will be invested across the Pilots up to 2025.

Greater Manchester (GM) is one of the 12 Pilots, each of the 10 GM localities are involved and have their own individual plans.

The Pilot is targeted at 3 audiences, who are more likely to be inactive, these are:

- Children and Young People, aged 5 – 18 years in out of school settings
- Adults aged 40 – 60 years, with or at risk of a long term health condition
- People who are unemployed or at risk of worklessness

The pilot work forms an important strand of the implementation of GM Moving, the plan for sport and physical activity.
The pilot is intended to embed the contribution of physical activity, in achieving the outcomes set in the strategies covering population health across GM.

Feel free to read below for more information about the work we're doing to target inactivity.


There are 9 key principles for the Pilot, that underpin and guide our work.

1. Must be an identifiable need:

- supported with an evidence base
- targeting the physically inactive (ensuring a focus on population health interventions and targeting the most 'at risk' proportionately)
- must align to one or more of the target audiences (and the insight that has been developed about them)

2. Builds on individual and community assets to add value to what is already going on i.e the conditions are right.

3. A plan for engaging the the key audiences and a commitment to co-design with public services and VCSE engaged

4. Must follow a whole system approach

5. Should demonstrate how it addresses social and health inequalities as a cross cutting theme

6. Embrace innovation and calculated risk in the interest of doing things differently

7. Is part of a coherent plan for physical inactivity in the locality underpinned by:

- a whole place approach to public expenditure in physical activity
- a focus on growth and sustainability

8. Commited to the GM and National Community of learning approach

9. Distributed leadership (everyone's a leader)

In addition we are taking a whole system approach to tackling inactivity. Inactivity is complex, with many different challenges impacting on our ability to move more.

This requires a dynamic way of working, and bringing various stakeholders including communities together, to develop a shared understanding of the challenges.

Then crucially working together with stakeholders to design and implement action, to bring about sustainable, long-term change.


MCRactive leads the Pilot work in Manchester and there are two tiers to the work. The tiered approaches were determined by research and insight, that was undertaken in the early stages of the pilot.

Tier One:
The Pilot requires us to take a place-based approach and four wards were selected, these are:

-Woodhouse Park
- Ancoats and Beswick
- Clayton and Openshaw
- Miles Platting and Newton Heath
Tier Two:
In addition to the place-based work, the plan includes a focus on Walking and Cycling (city wide). Through engagement we’ve identified walking and cycling are the activities most likely to get people moving more.

Through capacity created by the Pilot, we are working to ensure that opportunities around walking and cycling are maximised.  We are working with new and existing partners, to connect into the abundance of work happening across the City.

Where new environments are created and improved in the city for active travel and active recreation, we are working to support the right activation of those physical environments.


Since the Pilot began various mapping exercises for both Tier 1 & Tier 2 work has been undertaken and emerging opportunities identified.

The first stage has focused on engaging with people and communities, understanding the things that are important and what people hold as values and views about their place. Following some initial engagement across the City, we recognised that a strategic approach to engagement was required. To develop this MCRactive have partnered with Manchester Community Central (Macc) to collaborate on a Community Engagement Programme, which will focus on all 4 wards and target audiences with a focus on the VCSE sector.

Following engagement, the plan is to work together with the sector to codesign activities, initiatives, testing ideas and concepts and embed new ways of working.
We are involved in leading or supporting a number of projects, including:

Seeds of Joy, Miles Platting
Heart and Soul, Woodhouse Park
Sow the City, Newton Heath 
Step Up MCR Programme 
Upcoming projects
These are projects we will be developing or supporting in the future:

- Pride of Place, Openshaw
- Game Changers Active Communities Network 

We’re always keen to collaborate, if you would like to speak to the team, our contact details are:

Angela Martin - Health & Wellbeing Manager
Lead on the Local Pilot and Environment                                                         

Kim Liall - Local Pilot Project Officer
Contact for place based work and projects

Laurel Kinrade
Contact for walking and cycling  

Terry Manyeh
Contact for the community engagement programme and VCSE


Greater Manchester is one Sport England funded Local Pilot, for further information on the work in Greater Manchester please follow this link

There is further information available on the Sport England website about the national pilots:

Manchester’s strategy for sport and physical activity can be found here