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ABC Sports Forum

Armagh, Banbridge and Craigavon Sports Forum are a voluntary body that provide a voice for local sport. They work closely with Armagh City, Banbridge and Craigavon Borough Council and in particular the Sports Development Department to further aid the development of sport in the Borough. They do this through the delivery of the following key areas:

  1. Affiliation
  2. Grant Aid
  3. Coach Education Programme
  4. Clubmark NI
  5. Sports Awards
  6. Sport Directory
  7. E-Zines
  8. Bursaries

Armagh, Banbridge and Craigavon Sports Forum, a voluntary body that provide a voice for local sport, are currently seeking applications from clubs and individuals who wish to be affiliated with the organisation.

Working closely with Armagh City, Banbridge and Craigavon Borough Council and in particular the Sports Development Department the aim of the ABC Sports Forum is to further aid the development of sport in the borough.

Annual affiliation to the ABC Sports Forum includes many benefits such as access to Club Development Grants including; Clubmark NI Accreditation/Reaccreditation; Volunteer Development Grant; Grant Aid for Coaches & Umpires/Referees; and Representative Sporting Clubs. Eligible individuals can also apply for a Talented Athlete Grant; a Leisure Access Card and a Sports Bursary.

Affiliated members will also receive free places on the Coach Education & Club Development programme and receive regular sports development information on available grants, programmes and events including the annual junior and senior sports awards. Members will also have the opportunity to be elected to represent their sport on the ABC Sports Forum at the Annual General Meeting. Clubs can also have their details published on the Council’s Sports Directory page on the website.

Affiliation for the 2022/23 financial year is now open, the fee for Clubs is £20 and for Individuals is £10 for the year. New members wishing to affiliate must be affiliated to the Sport NI, Sport Ireland or UK Sport recognised Governing Body. Clubs must be based within the council area and Individuals also must reside within the ABC borough. Clubs must submit a copy of their club constitution as part of their affiliation to the Sports Forum.

Affiliation Forms

The purpose of the sports grant aid scheme is to provide financial support to help athletes, coaches and sports clubs from the Armagh City, Banbridge and Craigavon Borough Council area to attain their full potential. To be eligible, clubs or individuals are required to affiliate to the Armagh, Banbridge & Craigavon Sports Forum.

There are seven award schemes available:

Club Development Grants
Club Development Grants focus on increasing the quality of provision by local sports clubs and improving their operation. Clubs may apply for three of the four elements in one financial year. The elements are:

  • Clubmark NI Accreditation Grant
  • Volunteer Development Grant
  • Grant Aid for Coaches & Umpires/Referees
  • Representative Sporting Clubs

Individual Grants
In recognition of the commitment needed to participate at an elite level in sport, the Armagh, Banbridge and Craigavon Sports Forum have grants to assist amateur athletes who reside in the Armagh City, Banbridge and Craigavon Borough Council area with inherent costs in training, competing and accessing training facilities (Leisure Access Card). The two elements are:

  • Talented Athlete Grant
  • Leisure Access Card

Guidance Notes
Please ensure that you read the guidance notes below for both Club Development and Individual Grants Schemes.

Other Financial Assistance available:
Sports clubs are also eligible to apply under the following Armagh City, Banbridge & Craigavon Borough Council Grant Programmes:

  • Seeding Grants
  • Community Development Grants
  • Capital
  • Community Events Fund
  • Good Relations Grants
  • Everybody Active 2020

For further information, please visit:

Our Coach Education Programme provides opportunities for sports coaches, volunteers and administrators to further develop their knowledge and skills, relevant to these roles, in enjoyable and engaging environments.

The programme for 2022/23 takes a blended approach to delivery with a mixture of online workshop and webinars as well as practical workshops.

The programme offers a mixture of minimum operating standards that are required for good club governance, and club and coach development workshops to support coaches in the day-to-day running of their club sessions, which are practical in nature, relating to achieving optimal performance.

To download a copy of the programme along with details of each course, please click HERE

Places will be allocated on a first come first served basis, however priority will be given to coaches and clubs within the Armagh City, Banbridge and Craigavon Borough Council area.

Only 3 spaces per club can be registered to ensure as many clubs as possible avail of the opportunity to take part. Should demand be high, a subsequent course will be organised.

All courses have a minimum number and therefore are subject to cancellation should they not be met.

Please note we require 48 hours notice of any cancellation. Failure to adhere to this policy will result in your club being charged at the full non-affiliated rate. Consideration will be given to participants under exceptional circumstances who cannot attend and inform us of these reasons.

Affiliated clubs of the Armagh Banbridge and Craigavon Sports Forum can avail of free courses as part of their affiliation. For details of this voucher code please contact Sport Development.

For more information relating to any of the workshops, please contact Laura O’Hagan at  

Course:           Autism in Sport Training (Face-to-Face)

Content:         The Autism and Sports Coaching Couse is a 3 hour course designed to give people a basic understanding of Autism and the potential challenges for inclusion in sport. Participants will learn through practical examples, way to include people with Autism in their sessions and look at potential strategies and support for keeping people with Autism engaged in sport and active recreation.

Course:           Defibrillator Training (Face-to-Face)

Content:         Defibrillator training, including basic life support, will give you the confidence to act quickly and effectively if someone has a cardiac arrest. Delegates will learn how to operate a defibrillator and how to perform effective CPR.

This course teaches the essential skills for using a defibrillator, and gives students the confidence to know what to do in an emergency.

Course:            Designated Safeguarding Officer (Online)

Content:         This workshop aims to support those undertaking the role of Designated Safeguarding Children’s Officer in sports clubs including creating an awareness of key legislation and good practice, how to respond in a range of situations of concern and how to develop the standards of safeguarding within a club environment. Attendees must have attended ‘Safeguarding Children and Young People in Sport’ prior to attending this workshop and must be over 18 years of age.

This workshop will be delivered online in 2 x 1.5hr sessions. Both sessions need to be undertaken in order to complete the workshop.

Course:           Effective Organisational Structures (Online)

Content:         The way a club is legally structured can have a significant impact on club leaders, both on their club and them personally. Get it right and a club can be run effectively and may benefit financially. Get it wrong, and there could be significant implications for a club and potentially all of its members.

 Course:             Emergency First Aid for Sport (Hybrid)

Content:          This 6 hour workshop will cover elements of First Aid applicable to anyone who is responsible for coaching/supervising a team or individuals. A 3 year certificate of competency will be issued following successful assessment.  Attendance at both sessions is compulsory.

Part 1: Online 3 hr theory session

Part 2: Face-to-face 3hr practical session

Course:           Generating Club Income (Online)

Content:         Having a realistic and clear understanding of the likely sustainable income your club can generate is a vital ingredient of good financial management. A great way of ensuring your income is sustainable is to get it from a variety of sources including membership fees; sponsorship; fundraising; commercial partnerships; and grant funding.

Course:           Safeguarding Children & Young People in Sport (Online)

Content:         This workshop aims to raise awareness of Child Protection issues in sport and introduces participants to the Code of Ethics and Good Practice for Children’s Sport. This workshop is important for all adults involved in children’s sport, but is particularly recommended for Coaches, Leaders, Administrators and Officials. The workshop which has been adapted for online learning is now delivered in two parts.

Part 1: Mandatory pre-learning that consists of a 25 minute video which is required to be undertaken in advance of the online workshop.

Part 2: Online virtual workshop via Zoom.

Course:            Safeguarding Children and Young People in Sport (Face to Face)

Content:         This workshop aims to raise awareness of child safeguarding issues in sport and introduces participants to what is good practice for children’s sport and how to report any concern. This workshop is important for all adults involved in children’s sport, but is essential for Coaches, Leaders, Administrators, and Officials.

Part 1: Mandatory pre-learning that consists of a 25 minute video which is required to be undertaken in advance of the online workshop.

Part 2: A tutor led face-to-face workshop.

Clubmark NI is Northern Ireland’s quality standard for Sports Clubs. Sport NI works with Governing Bodies of Sport and Local Authorities to deliver the scheme, which aims to identify, develop, accredit and recognise high quality sports clubs.

Clubs and their members benefit through developing an organised club structure, implementation of policies and procedures, by creating a safe environment and parents appreciate the reassurance it brings.

Clubmark NI

To apply, clubs needs to register online, demonstrate that they meet minimum standards and provide evidence, in 5 key areas:

  • Effective Club Management
  • Community Engagement
  • Quality Coaching and Competition
  • Creating a Safe Environment
  • Safeguarding Members

Accreditation is available in 3 categories:

  • A Junior Club
  • A Senior Club
  • A Junior & Senior Club

For further information, please visit: http://www.sportni.net/clubs-coaching/clubmark-ni/

For support with your application, please contact your local Sports Development Team:




The Armagh, Banbridge & Craigavon Sports Forum in association with Armagh City, Banbridge and Craigavon Borough Council host both the annual Junior and Senior Sports Awards. Both events bring together athletes, teams, coaches, clubs and volunteers, recognising and rewarding their achievements and celebrating commitment and excellence in service, participation and performance.

Armagh Banbridge and Craigavon Junior Sports Awards 2022 Sponsored by new Headline Sponsor Manfreight Limited

Nominations for the 2022 Junior Sports Awards are now open. Taking place on Friday 14 October at the Armagh City Hotel, this prestigious sporting event will celebrate success, commitment and dedication from our athletes and sports representatives within our Borough.

So, if you know an individual or a team that has excelled in their sport, make sure you nominate by clicking below and have their achievements recognised.

Please download the JSA 2022 Guidance Notes below for further information on the selection criteria and award categories before nominating.

Closing date is Friday 8th July at 5pm

For further information please contact Sarah Aiken, Assistant Sports Development Officer at

Manfreight Ltd – International transport and logistics

Junior Sports Awards nominations are now closed. 

Armagh Banbridge and Craigavon Senior Sports Awards 2022

The Senior Sports Awards were held on Thursday 3rd March, in the Belmont House Hotel

Nominations for the Seniors Sports Awards 2023 will open in November

Welcome to the Armagh City, Banbridge and Craigavon Borough Council Directory of Sport. Here you will find a list of affiliated sports clubs to the Armagh Banbridge and Craigavon Sports Forum offering a range of sporting and physical activity opportunities across the area.

View ABC Directory of Sport >>

The Sports Bursary Scheme was introduced in November 2018 to facilitate the further development of aspiring athletes who have the ability and potential to bring credit to the Borough with success at Provincial level or higher.

Applications should be from athletes who have the potential to compete and achieve success at a very high level within their sport.

For more information please contact Sarah Aiken, Assistant Sports Development Officer on

The Sports Bursary Scheme is now closed