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leisure opportunities 29 APRIL – 12 MAY 2014 ISSUE 631 Daily news & jobs: TV ad storm sparks calls for school holiday debate

Te controversy surround- ing a Center Parcs TV advert accused of offering discount family breaks only available during school terms, has led to tourism industry calls for a review of the fining policy against parents taking chil- dren on term time breaks. Promoting midweek holi-

days for £279, Center Parcs’ advert showed parents and school-aged children enjoying resort activities, with small print stating that the offer “excludes school holidays”. Prompted to investigate

after receiving two com- plaints, the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) ruled the advert “irresponsibly encouraged par- ents to take their children out of school,” noting it was aimed at families yet wasn’t available dur- ing weekends or school holidays. However, a spokesperson for Center Parcs

Battersea’s four chimneys set for demolition

Developers behind the £8bn Battersea Power Station mixed-use renovation project will demolish the the Grade II listed building’s iconic chimneys, with work due to start this summer, but say all four will be fully restored by 2016. Te crumbling chimneys would

likely pose a danger to the under development leisure and retail project – which includes designs from archi- tects Norman Foster and Frank Gehry – with a combination of sulphurous emissions and weather exposure causing the chimneys to deteriorate. Details:



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Te tourism industry wants a debate on school holiday policy, which it says causes price hikes

told Leisure Opportunities the judgement was “extremely harsh” and pointed out that the advert had not been “banned”, as has widely been reported, stating instead that the company had been told it needed to remove the strapline

Cycling chief backs London’s latest hub

British Cycling technical director Shane Sutton is one of the main backers behind Athlete Lab – the latest cycle-focused fitness club to hit London in what is fast becoming an increas- ingly competitive market sector. Following hot on the heels of former Fitness

First CEO Colin Waggett’s Psycle, the £1.5m Athlete Lab aims to separate itself from the pack by offering an authentic road-biking experience to workers in the heart of the City. Te acquisition of Sutton as a shareholder –

who also oversees the coaching strategies – was a major coup for Athlete Lab founders Michael Flynn and Neil Franks, who launched their new London site at the beginning of April.

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Athlete Lab boasts custom-made road bikes The pair of triathletes met as British

expats in Singapore, and later opened the first Athlete Lab in the sovereign city-state before expanding the business to Sydney. Continued on the back cover

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emphasising the price point. Te spokesperson added

the company has to reduce prices significantly during off-peak periods to attract guests, likening the resulting price structure to that of peak and off-peak rail journeys. Kurt Janson, policy direc-

tor for the Tourism Alliance, said the tourism industry would welcome a debate as to how to enable families to undertake more affordable holidays while not adversely impacting on their education. “It is a question of get-

ting the right sort of balance rather than a clear case of affordable holidays or edu-

cation,” he told Leisure Opportunities. “Spreading demand would be of considerable benefit to the tourism industry, as extending the tourism season would help with main- taining the viability of many businesses.”

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