More leisure centres to re-open
Residents will soon be able to visit more leisure centres in Brighton & Hove, starting with the King Alfred, which opens its doors tomorrow (15 August).
Councillors agreed to a phased re-opening of facilities at a Special Policy & Resources Committee on 14 August.
The proposal is to open Portslade Sports Centre and Stanley Deason Leisure Centre from 1 September, with Moulsecoomb Community Leisure Centre and St Luke’s Swimming Pool to follow on 1 October.
Withdean Sports Complex re-opened on 27 July. Most of the King Alfred Leisure facilities will be available from 15 August, with the swimming pool opening on 17 August.
Prince Regent Swimming Complex will remain closed for the time being as major Health and Safety works are underway to replace the ventilation system which is over 30 years old. During lockdown LED improvements to the main pool lighting has already been able to be completed.
To assist Freedom Leisure who manage the centres on our behalf we are also proposing to extend their contract – due to end next March, for three years and waive the management fee from July 2020 to March 2021.
Councillor Marianna Ebel, joint chair of the Tourism, Equalities, Communities & Culture Committee, said: “We know how valued our community leisure centres are and how much they have been missed during the lockdown.
“Looking after our health, both mental and physical has been given new meaning during these challenging times but leisure centre operators across the country are facing a very difficult financial situation. In the light of this we are doing all we can to safely open facilities and enable them to keep open for our residents.”
Due to the council’s financial position we are unable to offer financial support, but the measures proposed will help to spread the cost over a longer period.
Leisure centres were allowed to re-open from 25 July but many still remain closed across the country. Industry associations such as Community Leisure UK are continuing to press for government support for public leisure centres.
Safety is a top priority for visitors and staff. This means leisure centres are more expensive to run, with extra cleaning and fewer people able to use our facilities at any one time.
Watch Freedom Leisure’s film about how staff are making sports, leisure and swimming safe for visitors.
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Leisure centres will open on a phased basis. Withdean Sports Complex will be the first to re-open on 27 July.