Following the government’s closure of all leisure facilities last month due to Covid-19, Stratton St Margaret Parish Council has agreed to support the ongoing management costs associated with Grange Leisure.
The popular community facility, which has been managed by Parkwood Leisure since July 2019, has recently undergone significant renovations including a refurbished gym, new group exercise and indoor cycling studios, new soft play areas as well as upgrades to the reception and café. The £850,000 facility investment was funded by the Parish Council through a public works loan.
Following last month’s closure of the site, the Parish Council have unanimously agreed to provide support from April onwards under the Miscellaneous Provisions Act 1976. This support will also mean that all contracted leisure centre staff will be retained on 80% of their salary as part of the government’s Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme.
Whilst Grange Leisure currently remains closed, the site’s kitchen is being used by volunteers to prepare meals to support vulnerable members of the community.
Cllr Robert Jandy states: “Grange Leisure is a hub for the community and the recent upgrades, in partnership with Parkwood Leisure, have delivered a high-quality facility for everyone to enjoy. Whilst we do not qualify for additional central government funding at this stage, Grange Leisure is hugely important to us and so we are committed to providing our support to help maintain services for our community.”
The official opening of Grange Leisure, which was planned for April, will now be rescheduled later in the year.