By Henry Valantine
Sporty students at Leeds Trinity University have been seeing ‘substantial benefits’ from public funding, according to university staff.
Trinity was awarded over £180,000 of grants from Sport England two years ago, and it is claimed that students now have increased access to a larger variety of sports than ever before.
Sarah Todd is the sports development manager at the university, based in Horsforth, and she believes that Trinity is becoming more active as a whole.
She said: “The funding is there for our inactive students to become more active, and we have seen a marked improvement in that area since the funds were brought in.
“We already received funding for Trinity Active several years ago, and we were given five ‘target sports’ to promote to students, and with this second set of grants we’ve opened that out to 10 sports.
“We’re seeing an increase in people having chance to play sport in the ‘middle ground’, not BUCS (British Universities and Colleges Sport) level, but also not beginners’ sessions, and that’s great to see.”
Trinity has also been able to open up female-only sessions at their gym because of the Sport England funds, in support of the ‘This Girl Can’ campaign, which aims to get more women taking up a sport.
The grants have also paid for two full-time members of staff to focus on developing sport at the university.
However, not everyone is convinced.
Daniel Foster, 23, is a final-year student at Trinity and a former gym member at the university, but he does not believe he feels the benefit himself.
He said: “I haven’t noticed much change in the past couple of years to be honest.
“Trying to get a game of squash booked is tough, for example, because they only have two courts and it’s not just students who can use the facility as it’s open to the public as well.”