Open data to boost physical activity

Making sport and activity data more accessible can play a key part in helping to build a more active nation

girl sparring in boxing ring

As part of our drive to see more people from all backgrounds taking part in sport and physical activity, we know open data can play a big part in helping us realise these objectives.

Open data is data that anyone can access, use or share. When large businesses and government departments release non-personal data, it allows individuals, start-ups, small businesses and researchers to make more informed decisions and to develop resources that help their communities.

We believe open data can boost the nation's physical activity levels in two key ways:

  • Helping consumers find relevant opportunities in their local area

We often hear from people that it's really hard to find relevant physical activities they can do locally. That's why we've partnered with the Open Data Institute (ODI) to deliver OpenActive, which makes information about physical activity more readily available, creates open data standards and encourages innovation and growth within sport and the physical activity sector.

  • Supporting our sector to collaborate using data

The sport and physical activity sector is working hard to understand what's stopping people from being regularly active. There are lots of organisations grappling with many of the same problems. By opening up the non-personal data that we're responsible for, such as facility locations and all the funding awards we've made, we want as many people as possible to analyse this data and create new solutions to help people get active.


OpenActive is an ambitious, community-led project backed by Sport England and the ODI which pushes for change across the sport and physical activity sector, which promotes the use of opportunity data to help people get active. The goal is to make this data on what, where and when physical activity sessions happen, openly available. This "opportunity data" includes details of a yoga class ("how much will it cost?") through to badminton court availability. ("where and when is a court available?").

OpenActive also provides the sport and physical activity sector with:

Sport England Data

Grants Data

We've openly published all the investments we have made from 1 April 2009 to 31 December 2017, in line with the 360 Giving data standard. This is available in CSV and JSON formats and can be downloaded from the GrantNav system. We aim to update this data every three months. Guidance on using GrantNav is available.

Our data can be downloaded in the 360 Giving format by clicking here.

Terms of Use: Our work with 360Giving is licensed under the Open Government Licence (OGL) v3. This means the data is freely accessible to anyone, to be used and shared as they wish. To view a copy of this license, please click here.

If you use our 360Giving data, it must be attributed with the following statement:

"Contains public sector grants data from Sport England, <the year of publication>, licensed under the Open Government Licence v3.0, accessed on <DD/MM/YY>."

Our data is also available as an Excel file from the documents area below.

All Sport England lottery awards can also be found on the DCMS National Lottery database, which contains awards information from the other Lottery distributors. This provides a high level overview of which organisations in your area have received funding and what the money was spent on.

Facilities Data

We've released our Active Places facility data as open data, available in both CSV and JSON formats. Active Places contains detailed information on 70-80% of the facilities where formal sport takes place across England. Facility types include health and fitness, sports halls, swimming pools, artificial and grass pitches and tennis courts. This data is regularly updated, and new facility types are being added all the time.


In line with the Treasury transparency initiative, we publish details of any non-grant spending (in other words, payments to a third party) over £25,000. We also publish details of senior staff salaries in £5,000 bands, junior staff posts and pay bands, and an organisational chart. This data is also available on the website.