How Community Sports Like Snooker Can be Funded…

How Community Sports Like Snooker Can be Funded…

Woking Council won’t have any money to invest in sports and leisure for a number of years, said Liberal Democrat Council Leader Ann-Marie Barker…

But…the popular Pool in the Park was spared by the Council in its shake-up of the public finances as it grapples with a huge deficit.

Cllr Barker said: “The Council won’t have money to invest in sports and leisure development for a number of years. What it can do is help and support and work with sports such as snooker. For example, we could help promote events. We may advise on sources of funding for access to improvements for disabled people.”


Council grants would be the first way for local snooker to receive funding by applying for them. Council leader Ann-Marie Barker told SnookerZone’s Chris Gaynor that Woking Snooker Centre in Surrey, could apply for a grant but that it would take a number of years before the grant was issued and it may not get the funding due to the financial deficit..


SnookerZone’s Chris Gaynor spoke to Sport England and was told by a Representative that “any organisation can apply for funding provided they meet certain criteria including being not for profit and open to the community.”

We asked if snooker clubs could apply and the Rep repeated the line, “any organisation can apply for funding provided…”



The English Partnership for Snooker and Billiards (EPSB), the main governing body for Snooker currently, is partnered with Sport England.

The EPSB was originally formed as an umbrella organization to bring together the sports key stakeholders in England, with the day-to-day running of the sports.

its objectives as outlined on the EPSB website are to:

  • promote, administer, encourage, and popularise the development of, and inclusive participation in, the sports in England;
  • organise, run and coordinate snooker and billiards events in England
  • provide support and coordination for snooker clubs in England and seek to improve playing facilities
  • provide training and development for referees

  • act as the body through which any public funding from Sport England (or any successor body) is received and spent on projects for the development of the sports in England.


Woking, along with some other councils across the UK are struggling with huge deficits. Woking currently has a huge £2 billion debt to manage.

Sport England works with councils such as Woking and Cllr Barker said they also work with Freedom Leisure who provide access to community sports for young people in the town and beyond.

A new community fund in Woking may be set up which will enable people in the town to choose and indicate where local money should be spent.

Cllr Barker said the huge redevelopment of Woking Football Club was no more.

She added: “We have been a partner in the Surrey Youth Games, which works with local sports clubs to offer free training on new sports for young people.”

Cllr Barker said of the budget: “The budget (2024/25) set on 8th February is one that puts our house in order and gets us living within our means. We will need to continue expenditure at this level for the foreseeable future. We also have a huge debt of over £2 billion and will need to sell assets and have government support to deal with that.”

Woking’s Council Tax will be going up by 10%, along with the other measures set out in the budget.

On the CT rise, Cllr Barker added: “Whilst a Council Tax increase is not what we want to do, it will bring in little over a £million and prevent further service cuts.


Other ways that local sports can be funded is through local community people or businesses, who either sponsor clubs, or talented players, and invest in the facilities and events going on. Sports clubs such as Woking rely heavily on the local community and beyond to help invest, promote, and also sponsor players and events.

SnookerZone has done a lot of promotion since 2015 for the club.


SnookerZone’s Chris Gaynor previously was told by the Woking MP Jonathan Lord, who backed investment in community sports, that: “Sports venues are vital pillars in our local community. We are fortunate to have many sports facilities right across Woking, including Woking Snooker Hub. It is clear that hubs like Woking Snooker Hub help bring together the whole community and provide a welcoming place for anyone to come in, learn a new sport, and also socialise.”

He added: “In recent years, I’ve been pleased that the Government has invested heavily in grassroots football and local sports – and I continue to be a firm supporter of greater investment in hubs and facilities across the sporting sector community.


Lord MP said to SnookerZone’s Chris Gaynor that he would be delighted to attend the SnookerZ Open run by social media star Terry T in April at the Woking Snooker Club who has recently sponsored Martin O’Donnell, who won the Christmas Cracker at Woking last December and had great success getting to the final of the Welsh Open.

He has also sponsored Snooker Legends 900 stars Ryan Mears and World No 15 Jasmine Bolsover.

Lord MP  added though that his calendar was quite full.

SnookerZ has run some very good tournaments in the past, including the Christmas Cracker and Pro-Ams and the Bob Mason Open last year.

Chris Gaynor directed Lord MP to the SnookerZ website…Whether he attends or enters the event is another matter!





Chris Gaynor

Chris Gaynor is a writer with 10 years' experience writing for the web. He loves snooker, CSI and loves cycling off tiramisu!