The Local Delivery Pilot Bid
The Sport England Local Delivery Pilot programme focuses on testing long term system change to tackle persistently high levels of physical inactivity. Active Essex submitted a 10,000 word expression of interest in early April 2017, on behalf of the Essex Health and Wellbeing Board. Sport England received over 150 expressions of interest and awarded Essex as a successful applicant on the 15th November 2017.
Sport England said that they chose the county of Essex with its large population of 1.4 million people because of the high levels of inactivity in many parts of the county. The three local authority areas of Basildon, Colchester and Tendring, were chosen as pilot places due to the high levels of inactivity and deprivation in the county. The three test areas offer rural, urban and coastal topographies as well as a variety of demographics that make up these places. The golden thread of the ELDP is to use a whole-system approach to improve wellbeing outcomes through physical activity, with particular focus on people who live in circumstances of deprivation, poor mental health and financial and social hardship.
Despite Active Essex leading the bid process from start to finish, an important strategic decision was made for it to be led by the Essex Health and Wellbeing Board. The board has a extensive agenda and compromises a large number of stakeholder organisations, which is led by Councillor John Spence, Essex County Council Cabinet member for Health and Social Care. Securing the support of Cllr Spence has been pivotal, as he fronted the bid and brought in support from other key political and strategic leaders across Essex.
The LDP has gone from strength to strength since November 2017 and has created a strong identity and profile across different system settings in Essex. The work of the pilot has been fully integrated into the business of Active Essex, which significantly strengthens the Active Partnership and provides the ELDP with a long-term sustainable home.