Letter to the Clerk of the Committee from
the Chief Executive of Sport England
Following your request on Friday, I am writing
to clarify the position with regard to the payment of the £20
million to be paid by the FA/WNSL to Sport England following the
23 December 1999 agreement between the Secretary of State and
The payment profile was set out in a letter
from the Secretary of State to Mr Bates, dated 7 January 2000,
However, as the funding for the project has
yet to be agreed between WNSL, the FA and the banksand,
therefore, the necessary changes to the Lottery Funding Agreement
have not been concludedthe first of these payments was
not made in December 2000, as scheduled.
We now envisage that the first payment will
be madeas indicated by the Secretary of Stateas
soon as the project's funding arrangements have been put in place.
Our working assumption is that the other four payments will then
be made as per the original schedule. However, we are grateful
to you for highlighting WNSL's differing interpretation of its
agreement with the Secretary of State, which would result in the
second, third, fourth and fifth payments being made on anniversaries
of the first.
It is our intention to clarify this point as
the arrangements are finalised with the FA/WNSL prior to financial
close. However, I am sure you will appreciate that Sport England
was not a party to the original agreement between the Secretary
of State and Mr Bates, so we believe that the DCMS and the FA/WNSL
are best-placed to end this uncertainty.
As the £20 million is essential to reducing
the funding gap in respect of Picketts Lock, we are keen to ensure
that final payment is made in line with its anticipated cashflow
needsand before the proposed new stadium would have to
be completed in order to stage the World Athletics Championships
I trust that this letter provides the information
you seek. However, please do not hesitate to contact us if you
need more information at any stage.