Support us or risk losing half of the UK’s leisure centers, industry warns | Business


Almost half of UK public leisure centers are threatened with closure by Christmas, putting more than 58,000 jobs at risk and hitting the most disadvantaged areas of the UK more severely, due to the devastating financial impact of the Covid-19 pandemic.This is the stern warning from UK Active and Community Leisure UK, who told the Guardian that 1,300 of the 2,727 recreation centers funded by local authorities and 20% of British swimming pools could close permanently in the next six months, to less than the government steps.

Industry professional organizations have written to MPs telling them that public recreation centers, swimming pools and community services, which are funded by local authorities, face a shortfall of more than £ 800 million sterling this exercise because of the lock. As a result, they urge the government to urgently provide limited funding to local authorities to “protect these vital facilities for this generation and the next.”

“The United Kingdom is falling asleep in the loss of thousands of community gymnasiums and leisure centers that are part of our fabric and serve as the front line at the NHS,” said Huw Edwards, Managing Director of UK Active. “Without public recreation facilities, our communities will be deprived of the social, physical and mental benefits that will be vital in our continued battle and recovery from Covid-19.”

UK Active also warned that a significant proportion of the 3,380 British bathing facilities, public and private, were at risk. A spokesperson said that while it was difficult to calculate precise figures, based on consultations with their members, they estimate that around 20% of all pools are threatened with closure.

“Two-thirds of all swimmers in England use public recreational pools rather than private facilities, so the impact on swimming levels is disproportionate and they will be hit the hardest,” the spokesman added.

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