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INTERVIEW


Primetime is a programme for the over-60s


ArtsTrain engages young people through activities such as song-writing


“Local authorities are well-placed to integrate leisure with social care and health services”


Trainer scheme. We’ve also developed a diabetes programme and are looking at offering something in the area of sexual health, as there’s a high demand for this. “The recent changes in the public


health structure should also help here: we need to build relationships with the new commissioners, but I believe local authorities are much better placed to integrate leisure with social care, health services and so on. Nevertheless, they still face tough fi nancial decisions, so we always come back to the same issue: evidence and value for money. We need to demonstrate that it would be foolhardy to cut back on the programmes we’re running. “We’re currently looking at investing a


further £100,000 in a bespoke software system that will guide patients through our programmes, providing the evidence we need to demonstrate that they represent excellent value for money.”


Cradle to grave Price continues: “The other very successful initiative we run – and I’m


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going back into leisure here – is Primetime, which is a programme for the over-60s. We have a team of 24 volunteers, all dressed in lime green so you can’t miss them when you walk into our leisure centres, whose role it is to organise activities for our older members. They do lots of social activities – they’d been to the theatre when I last spoke to them, and were going off to do a belly dancing class. “The volunteers are all older


themselves, so the members may even know them personally – at the very least, the word spreads through local friendship groups. That encourages people who might not otherwise come to our centres to give it a go. Again, it’s fi nding the people who are best placed to tap into networks that already exist. “We run 64 dedicated Primetime


sessions a week across eight venues, and in a typical month we’ll get around 30,000 visits from people aged over 60.” At the other end of the age spectrum,


Mytime’s ArtsTrain initiatives target young people: “It’s not a traditional


Read Health Club Management online at healthclubmanagement.co.uk/digital


leisure offering – it’s more focused on engaging young people through activities like song-writing and music production. It’s designed to help young people gain skills and qualifi cations that will make them more employable.”


Strong foundations


“Our over-arching vision is to change people’s lives,” concludes Price. “I believe the whole ethos of our organisation is structured around delivering that. However, there’s no room for complacency, and we’ll continue to look selectively at opportunities to reach even further into communities around the UK. “Looking forward, we will continue


to expand our health offering nationally, further grow our golf portfolio, and maximise the value of our existing leisure assets through continual re-investment. So we certainly have strong ambitions as a business. But as I said before, none of this is a case of giant strides in the dark. We’re simply building on what we already do well.” ●


June 2013 © Cybertrek 2013


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