This page contains a Flash digital edition of a book.


Proving outcomes: Local authorities will have to prove they offer value for money, says ISPAL chair Peter Mann

Peter Mann Chair, ISPAL

The next few years will change the face of local authority leisure. The extent of this change will depend on the level of government grant to councils and the priority given to leisure services. As a discretionary service, leisure is

more exposed than other local authority services. While the public sector will remain at the heart of leisure, I believe we’ll witness a focus away from direct provision towards a promoting, facilitating and commissioning role. Leisure departments will need to

actively promote the benefi ts that leisure and culture bring to a community:

Peter Howells

Operations director, Leisure Connection

At Leisure Connection, we’re working closely with our local authority partners to look at how we can support them through the tough years ahead. The next three to fi ve years will be

crucial, but we expect to come out the other side. For those authorities that have already outsourced leisure, I think it will be a time to review how operators are working. For those that haven’t, it could be an attractive prospect.


social inclusion, general wellbeing, crime reduction and health. Although undervalued in a diffi cult fi nancial climate, these can bind communities together during hard times. There will also need to be a greater

emphasis on building links with local employers, to facilitate the fi nancial and human resources potentially available via company corporate social responsibility programmes. Reviewing the objectives of these programmes may open up new opportunities for companies and councils to work together. Another role could be the purchasing

of specifi c outcomes, activities or time from other public sector providers, such as schools or new community, third sector or private sector providers. Facility rationalisation appears

unavoidable and only the best located, The biggest change in the last 20

years of local authority leisure has been the outsourcing of leisure as a non- statutory service. As a result, private operators have entered the market and have invested millions in the provision of public access leisure and other cultural facilities. To the end user, the quality of the service has signifi cantly improved. Local authority leisure centres are no longer the poor relation in the industry. Leisure Connection is now broadening

the scope of the projects it manages. We’ve taken on various outreach programmes for sport and the community and manage numerous theatres, arts centres and arts outreach programmes.

Read Health Club Management online at

best managed and output-driven facilities may survive the cuts. Facilities might be scaled down to a central hub site only. Where local authorities continue providing direct leisure services, they will need to demonstrate that they offer value for money, through optimising income, driving down costs and continuing to develop enhanced facilities and products which refl ect the quality expectations of their customers. ISPAL and ISRM are working with

the Privy Council and key stakeholders towards the potential creation of the Chartered Institute of Sport. This new institute won’t solve all the challenges, but it will play a key role in helping us become more adept at managing, pioneering, facilitating, promoting and commissioning the services our communities so urgently need.

For Leisure Connection, despite the

spending review, it’s still business as usual: focusing on our swim and gym revenue lines, managing our cost base, especially utilities, and looking at where to make investments. In terms of the future, we experience

a great deal of interest in our health and community hub in Downham Leisure Centre, managed on behalf of the London Borough of Lewisham. This project houses a state of the art leisure centre and swimming pool but also a community access point, numerous surgeries and practices and a popular library. This type of integrated facility could become the future for new provision and services.

february 2011 © cybertrek 2011


Page 1  |  Page 2  |  Page 3  |  Page 4  |  Page 5  |  Page 6  |  Page 7  |  Page 8  |  Page 9  |  Page 10  |  Page 11  |  Page 12  |  Page 13  |  Page 14  |  Page 15  |  Page 16  |  Page 17  |  Page 18  |  Page 19  |  Page 20  |  Page 21  |  Page 22  |  Page 23  |  Page 24  |  Page 25  |  Page 26  |  Page 27  |  Page 28  |  Page 29  |  Page 30  |  Page 31  |  Page 32  |  Page 33  |  Page 34  |  Page 35  |  Page 36  |  Page 37  |  Page 38  |  Page 39  |  Page 40  |  Page 41  |  Page 42  |  Page 43  |  Page 44  |  Page 45  |  Page 46  |  Page 47  |  Page 48  |  Page 49  |  Page 50  |  Page 51  |  Page 52  |  Page 53  |  Page 54  |  Page 55  |  Page 56  |  Page 57  |  Page 58  |  Page 59  |  Page 60  |  Page 61  |  Page 62  |  Page 63  |  Page 64  |  Page 65  |  Page 66  |  Page 67  |  Page 68  |  Page 69  |  Page 70  |  Page 71  |  Page 72  |  Page 73  |  Page 74  |  Page 75  |  Page 76  |  Page 77  |  Page 78  |  Page 79  |  Page 80  |  Page 81  |  Page 82  |  Page 83  |  Page 84