24 March 2021
Preston's leisure centres will reopen to the public once permitted by government following a significant award of grant funding from Sport England's Recovery Fund.
Both West View and Fulwood Leisure Centres are expected to reopen their doors on April 12, in line with the government's roadmap out of lockdown, following the successful bid for £322,139 by Preston City Council and leisure provider and charitable enterprise GLL.
Facilities at West View Centre are also set for additional improvement after a partnership was agreed with Lakeland Climbing Centre who will invest their own additional funding into the centre to improve the existing rope climbing walls and create a bouldering room.
Councillor Peter Kelly, Cabinet Member for Culture and Leisure Services at Preston City Council, said:
"We are thrilled to announce Preston's leisure centres will be reopening their doors to the public and are grateful to Sport England for this vital funding. Leisure centres are key community hubs providing a place for people to come together to stay fit, try new activities and discover new passions.
"This news is extra special as it means West View, which has been closed to the public for some time, will be able to reopen its doors and serve the local community. We're also pleased to welcome a new partner on board to improve the climbing facilities at West View opening the door of a fantastic sport to people in the area. This is an exciting day and we cannot wait to reopen once permitted by government."
Following its reopening West View will be relaunched as West View Better Health Leisure Centre and will feature an affordable Health Club with gym, 25m swimming pool, spin studio, group exercise studio, sauna and steam room, alongside a 5-a-side football centre, children's soft play area and a café hub.
Jeremy Wilson, Founder and CEO of Lakeland Climbing Centre, commented:
"We are excited to be working alongside GLL and will take over the management of the climbing walls at the West View Centre.
"We aim to invest into this wonderful facility and have plans to spend £350,000 on new walls, holds and other facilities over the next six months. In particular we want to add more bouldering for all, but with a focus on the beginner and intermediate climber, as well as a brand new lead wall.
"We hope to turn West View into a regional climbing centre of excellence."
Tim Bestford, Head of Service for GLL, added:
"The financial support from the Recovery Fund along with the supportive partnership we have with Preston City Council, has provided a lifeline for West View Leisure Centre.
"We feel hugely positive about our new working relationship with Lakeland Climbing Centre, whose financial commitment and specialist knowledge of the climbing sector will enable us to provide a hugely improved leisure offering to the local community.
"We're now calling on Preston's residents to support reopening and visit their local facility to ensure these facilities are sustainable."
It is anticipated that indoor leisure facilities will reopen to the public on April 12, with the climbing walls open in June following maintenance and new route setting.
The 25m swimming pool at West View Leisure Centre is expected to reopen slightly later, in early summer, following remedial work.