The Minister for Tourism, Culture, Arts, Gaeltacht, Sport and Media, Catherine Martin T.D., and the Minister of State for Sport and Physical Education, Thomas Byrne T.D., have just announced that a new round of the Sports Capital and Equipment Programme (SCEP) will open for new applications from 17th July.

The SCEP is the Government’s primary vehicle for providing support to sports clubs and communities to develop sports infrastructure around the country.

Applicants for local projects can now apply for up to €200,000, increased from the previous maximum grant of €150,000.

The maximum valid grant available for projects deemed to be of regional significance has been increased from €300,000 to €500,000.

In addition, this year’s SCEP “Guide to Making an Application” has a focus on climate action and sustainability for the first time, supporting local clubs to take steps to reduce their energy consumption and applying for more efficient lighting.

For the first time in the history of the SCEP, projects will only be considered for grant support if access is guaranteed to men and women on equal terms. As one of the stated objectives of the Programme is to increase female participation, all applications for funding of women-only facilities will be deemed valid for consideration.

“This is excellent news for sports organisations that have plans to improve their facilities and wish to avail of support,” said Minister Martin.

“The Programme has already made an enormous difference to communities in every part of the country. To encourage as many people to participate in sport and physical activity as possible, we need to have appropriate sports facilities and equipment.”

“The new round of the Programme will again prioritise applications from disadvantaged areas, those that target people with disabilities, and projects that share facilities amongst different organisations and sports. In relation to changes to the scheme, I am very pleased that applications for improvements to swimming pools will be accepted for the first time. I also welcome the fact that, for the first time, the “Guide to Making an Application”, as published today, has a specific focus on climate action and sustainability issues.”

“I have seen at first hand the huge difference that Sports Capital and Equipment Programme grants make to sports clubs and community groups across the country,” added Minister Byrne.

“I am also very aware of the impact that construction inflation has had on our sports clubs and community groups in recent years and I am delighted to note that we are increasing the maximum grants available under the Programme.”

“Ensuring equality in sport has been a particular priority for me since my appointment. Under this round of the Programme, applicants that do not provide access to facilities on similar terms to male and female users will not be eligible for capital funding.”

“As one of the stated objectives of this Programme is to increase female participation, all applications for funding of the very small number of women-only facilities will be deemed valid for consideration. This new requirement is highlighted in the Guide to Making an Application which is available to download on the Department’s website.”

The first step in obtaining a grant is to register on the Department’s online system and the Ministers encouraged any clubs that are not already registered to do so now. Clubs can register at

Once registered, all applications must be made on the same website. The system will be open for applications from 17 July to 8 September.

The “Guide to Making an Application” was also published on the Department’s website today and can be found here: The Guide essentially sets out the terms and conditions of the Programme. A review of the 2020 round of the Programme was published in May and all of the main recommendations have been included in the Guide.

Sport for Business Perspective:

This news is just breaking and we will have a detailed analysis of the new elements, including the important additions of the gender and sustainability elements over the next 24 hours.

We will also look to host an information session on the new round in the coming weeks with our partners 2Into3.

If you are interested in taking part in this, please give an expression of interest by email in the first instance to