Playfinder News

House of Lords Report – A national plan for sport, health and wellbeing: What is it and how can I help?

On the 10th December a House of Lords report was published, the National plan for sport, health and wellbeing, highlighting the effectiveness of the current sports and recreation policies in the UK.  

The report paints a worrying picture. 12.5 million people in England (27.5% of the population) were classed as inactive between May 2020-2021, with those in lower socio-economic groups even less so.

However, amongst the damning statistics, there is light. The report sets out a series of recommendations designed to tackle the levels of inactivity and ensure that the industry starts doing more to increase accessibility & participation, and takes more accountability for the important role it plays in society.

All we need now is for the Government to sit up and take notice.

Playfinder was founded on the promise to improve accessibility to sports facilities across the UK and get people active, no matter where they are, who they are, or what sports they enjoy. As part of that promise we’re committed to ensuring that the recommendations set out in this House of Lords report, especially those around access to open data, are followed through!

What are we doing about it?

Point 102 of the Report states: 

“Sport England should make funding to organisations contingent on them providing information for the Open Data initiative.”

At Playfinder, we strongly back this recommendation and believe that public funding into sport and physical activity should be made contingent on open data being made available. It is our goal to ensure that the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) accept this proposal in full and work with Sport England and other funding bodies to implement it, building on top of the fantastic work already done by the OpenActive community initiative.

What is OpenActive

  • OpenActive is a community organisation, funded by Sport England, which has defined a standardised approach to publishing bookable open data, which organisations are actively  
  • OpenActive is already used in leisure contracts such as Manchester Active and in the governance documentation that has gone to NGBs for the new ‘22-’27 funding round
  • OpenActive could be easily extended to include the sharing of anonymised participation data, for use with the new Physical Activity Observatory

For more information see

So, what are we doing to help? 

Between now and the 10th February, Playfinder, with the support of our partners and other leading members of the industry, will be lobbying the government to shine a light on the Report and the importance of the recommendations set out. 

The ball is already rolling. Alongside OpenActive, an open letter is being readied to be sent to Minister for Sport Nigel Huddleston MP, and Minister for Health Sajid Javid MP. The more letters sent, the bigger the impact. But that’s not all. A call to arms across social media aims to bring together the biggest and brightest in the industry to raise awareness of our campaign, and put even more pressure on lawmakers when the 10th February rolls around.

The recommendations laid out in this Report can make a real difference to people’s lives and should not go ignored. It is our goal to highlight the importance that the sector places on digital solutions and open data’s role in increasing accessibility and participation in grassroots sport.

Will you join us?

How can you help?

With so much on the Government’s plate right now, we are going to need everyone to play their part. No matter your role, you can help us get the support we need to make a difference. Whether you’re a lover of sport struggling to find places to play, a leisure industry leader pioneering game changing SportTech solutions, or a council member looking for more funding and increased utilisation of your sports facilities, your voice matters.

We’ve everything you need to have your say. So, grab a pen (or a keyboard) and sign a letter to your MP. Take to Twitter and post your support. Don’t forget to use the hashtag #LordsSportReport. Like us on LinkedIn and share with your network. However you choose to get involved, every little helps.

If you want to get more involved or find out more about the campaign drop us an email at and we’ll be in touch.