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London Marathon Foundation to award further £500,000 to inspire activity in Essex as part of Ford RideLondon-Essex legacy

Ahead of the third edition of Ford RideLondon-Essex, the London Marathon Foundation today (Tuesday 21 May) announced an additional award in principle of £500,000 to continue supporting communities across Essex to lead active and healthy lives. This brings the Foundation’s total funding awarded in Essex to £2.25 million since May 2022.  

News of the additional funding comes just ahead of the 2024 Ford RideLondon-Essex, which will see the county welcome more than 20,000 riders to take part in one of three inspirational rides and two stages of the Ford RideLondon Classique, the UCI Women’s WorldTour professional race, between Friday 24 and Sunday 26 May.  

The Foundation’s funding in Essex will continue to be managed by Active Essex, building on an existing partnership which has supported more than 39,000 residents to participate in physical activity in the past two years. 

Since the beginning of the funding partnership in 2022:  

  • 337 grants have been awarded through the Find Your Active Small Grants programme and Places and Spaces programme, supporting residents of all ages to get active across Essex by taking part in a wide range of activities. 
  • 1,180 free bikes have been distributed to residents in Clacton, Jaywick, Colchester, Harwich & Dovercourt and Basildon, through the Essex Pedal Power programme. 

Funding has prioritised initiatives designed to reach those who are less likely to be active including children and young people, older people, disabled people or those with long-term health conditions and communities facing financial barriers to accessing physical activity. 

Active Essex will use the new £500,000 to continue to build on the excellent work already funded since the beginning of this partnership. Active Essex will soon share more details about what initiatives will be supported with this additional funding over the coming year. 

Deirdre Cole, Senior Funding Manager at London Marathon Foundation, said: “We’re excited to continue our partnership with Active Essex to ensure that residents across Essex have increased access to a broad range of sports and activities, building on the impact we’ve already had and delivering on our mission of Inspiring Activity. The wide range of groups and organisations this funding is supporting in Essex is truly inspiring and we know that by working together we can continue to build active and healthy communities across the county.” 

Councillor Louise McKinlay, Cabinet Member for Communities at Essex County Council said: “The funding partnership between Active Essex and the London Marathon Foundation, has achieved great results over the past two years in supporting people across Essex to get moving more. This additional money will be used to build on this progress and help more people across the county, live healthier and more active lives.” 

Jason Fergus, Director of Active Essex said: “I’m delighted that our funding partnership with the London Marathon Foundation continues following the Ford RideLondon-Essex 2024 event, building a great legacy. We have seen that this funding has had a huge impact on activity levels across the county, and by working closely with local partners, organisations and communities we can help support more residents to engage in physical activity opportunities.” 

The 2024 Ford RideLondon-Essex takes place between Friday 24 May and Sunday 26 May.