young players in numbered bibs

playing fields
in numbers

Why we exist

  • There are around 1,500 playing fields in London, owned by local authorities, schools, charities and commercial companies.
  • London is home to 16% of the UK population but only has 8% of its playing fields.
  • London’s public green space has a gross asset value of more than £91 billion, providing services valued at £5 billion a year.
  • London saves £950 million per year in health costs due to the impact of living and working close to public green space.
  • In the UK, 17% of deaths are caused by inactivity. It is estimated that physical inactivity costs the economy £7.4 billion in premature deaths, healthcare and sickness absence.
  • For each £1 spent by local authorities and their partners on public green space, Londoners enjoy at least £27 in value in terms of economic health benefits
  • London has lost 20% of its grass football pitches since 1990.
  • 41% of London’s natural turf cricket pitches have been lost since 1990.
cricket game in London playing field

Our impact

During 2018*:

  • 709 cricket matches were played on our pitches, around 38 games a week.
  • 3,771 football matches were played on our grounds, 134 matches a week.
  • 105 local people signed up to our Green Hearts project which gets people walking, jogging or running around our fields to keep active and improve well-being.
  • 93 Football Association education courses were delivered on our grounds, supporting career progression in sport.
  • 65 cricket teams played on our grounds.
  • 563 football teams regularly used our facilities.
  • More than 200,000 Londoners used our pitches, which are available to hire.
  • 162 adults and 53 young people attended Coping Through Football, a grassroots project which improves the well-being of adults and young people experiencing mental health problems.
  • 54 youth football matches were played at London Marathon Playing Field Greenwich each Sunday during the football season.

*1st October 2017-30th September 2018.


For every £1 we invest in producing good quality pitches, we only recoup 39p in hiring income.

PLEASE DONATE TODAY to make sure our work can keep having an incredible impact on people’s lives.


Coping Through Football

Support our groundbreaking social inclusion project to help people with mental health problems get their lives back on track.

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Green Hearts

Find out about our Green Hearts initiative and our other social inclusion projects

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