SPORTING clubs in Cumbria are being urged to bid for £10 million of Olympic legacy investment.

Already 350 community groups in the UK have been offered £17.4 million in funding through Sport England’s Inspired Facilities Fund and it is hoped clubs in the region could improve their facilities with the grants.

Sport England’s chairman Richard Lewis said: “For hundreds of clubs and tens of thousands of people, 2012 will be the year their local sports facilities got better.

“We’ve had unprecedented demand for this fund, which has really hit the mark with sports clubs. It shows we’re offering the sporting legacy that people want.”

The investments are aimed at breathing new life into tired facilities that can be unattractive to sports participants, difficult to maintain and run.

Grants have also been offered to convert existing buildings into venues that are suitable for grassroots sport and to allow local clubs to buy the facilities they use.

Kirkby Lonsdale Rugby Club and Windermere Lawn Tennis Club have already taken advantage of the scheme with a combined £70,000.

Minister for Sport and the Olympics, Hugh Robertson MP, said: “We want to use the Olympic and Paralympics to inspire a generation to get involved in sport across the country.

“This is why as part of the £135 million Places People Play legacy programme we invited community sports clubs to apply for funding to upgrade their facilities.”

Applications for the second round of Inspired Facilities is open until Monday, April 2.