Gateshead's bid to host the 2026 European Championships is "dead in the water" after funding ©Getty Images

A Gateshead bid to host the 2026 European Championships is "dead in the water" after a proposal to win £25 million ($33.7 million/€29.2 million) in Government funding was refused, the leader of the Gateshead Council has claimed. 

As a part of the "Levelling Up" fund created by the United Kingdom's Conservative Government to provide funding across the north of England, Gateshead applied for a £25 million injection of cash to host the 2026 European Championships. 

However, the request was rejected, leaving any hopes of hosting the Championships "dead in the water", according to Council leader Martin Gannon.

"We submitted a bid of £25 million to support Newcastle and Gateshead, working in partnership with the other local authorities across the region," Gannon told a North East Combined Authority meeting on Tuesday per Chronicle Live.

"An opportunity to present the North East to the world was rejected. 

"The European Games [Championships] 2026 is effectively, without Government support, dead in the water."

Gannon said local politicians had been working with UK Athletics, Sport England and the Department for Culture, Media, and Sport for "some time".

He added: "It would be a huge opportunity for the North East, we would not get anything else on this sort of scale."

Gannon compared the decision to the £1 billion ($1.3 billion/€1.2 billion) received by the West Midlands Combined Authority to host the Commonwealth Games in Birmingham next year, complaining about the lack of state funding for an international multi-sports event.

Gateshead Council said the Government refused the funding request as the Levelling Up fund is "an extremely challenging process, taking into account the significant public expenditure during the pandemic to keep people employed and support a wide range of public services and sectors, including sport."

The European Championships was first joint-hosted by Berlin and Glasgow in 2018 and is due to take place in Munich between August 11 and 21 next year.

insidethegames has contacted the European Championships for comment.