Creating an Active Black Country - a strategy to unite the Black Country to create active, healthier people and places - read more

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Who We Are

Active Black Country is the Active Partnership for the Black Country region providing the strategic leadership for sport and physical activity across the areas of Dudley, Sandwell, Walsall and Wolverhampton.

We believe that being active has the power to improve people’s lives, that it is everyone’s right to be active and play sport and that everyone in the Black Country has equal access to the benefits of a more active, healthy life.

The Local Challenge
The activity levels of Black Country people are significantly determined by their income, ethnicity and where they live. 556,142 Black Country people live in 20% most deprived parts of England. This pre-existing inequality significantly contributes to over 36.4% of our adult population being classed as inactive. Inactivity promotes wider health inequalities – 480,497 of our adult population live in areas with the greatest levels of poor health.

Local Ambition

  • Unite all people and partners who have a role to play in tackling the inequalities that prevent Black Country people from being active.
  • Harnessing the power of working together to realise everyone’s right to be active and reduce health inequalities.

In October 2022, we launched our new strategy 'Creating and Active Black Country' - click here to read more.

The geographical region called the ‘Black Country’ is made up of 30 towns and four strategic centres with a growing population of 1.17m. The population is broken down by a gender split that is slightly more women than men, an age split that has 82.6% of its population under the age of 65 and a diverse ethnic population which is slightly larger than national average.

Sitting at the heart of England, the Black Country forms the west part of the West Midlands Metropolitan Area comprising the three separate Borough councils of Walsall, Dudley and Sandwell, and the City council of Wolverhampton. It has a proud and diverse history with a belief that it is a place not defined by its borders, but by its people.

Physical inactivity now kills as many people as smoking in the UK, and costs the economy £7.4bn a year.

The Black Country has some of the highest national levels of physical inactivity across our working age population – we need to get another 72,000 people physically active every week to reach national average.

Critically the health and wellbeing of our regions children and young people is in a perilous state, with childhood obesity amongst the highest in the country – we have to act now to secure future generations health.

We work collaboratively with a range of local partners to inspire and enable people to lead an active lifestyle, creating a broad and diverse range of opportunities for individuals that are both inclusive and attainable

As a commissioner:
Where we hold programme investment we will distribute our funding in line with addressing inequalities, working with those greatest in need to realise a broader impact.

As an enabler:
We will seek to strengthen communities across the Black Country and support those partnerships who can support great community led activity.

As a lead, a broker or a facilitator:
We will strengthen our networks locally, regionally and nationally actively sharing ideas, knowledge and evidence. We will collaborate with those who can make a difference and reflect the diversity across our communities. We recognise we can’t deliver this vision alone and will play our part, leading from the front or supporting from behind, to ensure our common purpose is realised.

As an innovator:
Embracing new ideas from people, communities and partners with fresh approaches to complex problems. We will be open to ideas generation, new approaches, partners and thereby grow new best practices. As an advocate: We will champion the Black Country and continuously seek to promote and advance its successes within the region and to a wider audience.

As an advocate:
We will champion the Black Country and continuously seek to promote and advance its successes within the region and to a wider audience.

As an interpreter:
We will understand the needs of the communities and individuals which we seek to represent and serve.


Timely data and learnings in relation to physical activity and sport in the Black Country and the added value we can offer.

Read more about the Insight Hub


Resources and training material to support the Black Country sport & physical activity workforce

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