Public leisure facilities and services have a vital, if not unique, role to play in our 10-year vision for sport and activity because of their value to the people who use them most.
For decades they have fed the next generation’s love of sport and being active, supported those with health conditions through good days and bad, and connected us all to our communities in a safe, friendly, and local space.
Many of us learned to swim or had our first game of five-a-side in facilities owned and run by local authorities.
Like all parts of society, the pandemic has hit public leisure hard. In the past year, government investment delivered by us through the £100m National Leisure Recovery Fund has helped many of these vital spaces to reopen.
This, in combination with additional local authority funding and operator reserves, has reduced the funding gap for local leisure services significantly.
Moving Communities – our new data platform tracking the sector’s performance, sustainability and social value – has monitored participation at public leisure facilities throughout this period and is giving us, the sector and government the clearest picture we’ve ever had of how leisure services are performing, improving and making an impact in their communities.