Have your say on vision for leisure, health and wellbeing in west Cheshire

24 September 2020

Residents, sports clubs and fitness customers are invited to help shape the future of leisure services delivered by Brio Leisure in west Cheshire.

Cheshire West and Chester Council and Council-owned company Brio are revealing their vision for affordable and accessible leisure services for all and are asking residents to have their say on the ideas.

Councillor Louise Gittins, Leader of the Council and Cabinet Member for Health and Wellbeing, said: “At a time like this, looking after our health and wellbeing is more important than ever and having easy and safe access to leisure opportunities, like sports and fitness classes, can help us to keep physically well and to look after our mental health.

“In west Cheshire the Council and Brio are working together to change the way leisure services are delivered so that we can make sure everyone can access sports and fitness opportunities easily.

“The Council faces increasing pressures on its budgets and COVID-19 has had an enormous impact on the leisure sector, which was already changing and posing challenges to Brio through shifts in the market with the increase of budget gyms, a rise in operating costs and the ageing condition of a number of its sites in the borough.”

Elly McFahn, Managing Director of Brio Leisure added: “We know the way we run leisure, health and wellbeing services in the borough has to be reviewed, and we see this as a real opportunity to tailor valuable health and wellbeing services on a local level, working with our communities to find out how to meet their needs in the best way and encourage more people to get more active, more often. 

“We’re also keen to work more closely with our customers to better understand their motivations and how these have more recently changed through the health pandemic, to enable us to continue to listen, innovate and evolve based on our community demand.” 

The future vision outlined in the consultation, which launches today, Thursday 24 September, is for accessible and affordable leisure, health and wellbeing services designed for each area to support and improve the health and wellbeing of individuals and communities.

It would see Northgate Arena, Ellesmere Port Sports Village, Northwich Memorial Court and Winsford Lifestyle Centre becoming primary hub sites with facilities in Christleton, Neston and Frodsham/Helsby as secondary hub sites. These would offer a customised range of services to meet the needs of residents.

Alongside this, services could also be delivered in different ways closer to communities – including making more use of existing community facilities, partner networks, green space, outdoor facilities and digital opportunities.

Cllr Gittins said: “The Council and Brio want to work in partnership with our communities, all playing our part to look at what we offer, how we do it and how we could do it differently to make a greater difference to people’s lives and achieve our aims of supporting children and young people to make the best start in life and enabling more adults to live longer, healthier and happier lives, while achieving the best value for the public money that we have available.”

For more information and to have your say visit: www.cheshirewestandchester.gov.uk/brioconsultation

You can also email: briofutureoffer@cheshirewestandchester.gov.uk or request a paper questionnaire by phoning 01244 478 590.

Information sessions will take place via Microsoft Teams on the following dates:
  • Monday 19 October 2020, 6-7pm
  • Monday 26 October 2020, 3-4pm
To book onto one of these sessions and to receive information about how to access them, please contact: briofutureoffer@cheshirewestandchester.gov.uk

The engagement will close on Sunday, 1 November 2020.

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