Council plans to bring North Yorkshire leisure services in-house
Last updated Nov 28, 2023
The new Harrogate Leisure and Wellness Centre.

North Yorkshire Council looks set to bring the entirety of its leisure services in-house.

The move would consolidate its operators, including Brimhams Active, into an in-house service over the next four years.

North Yorkshire Council’s transition overview and scrutiny committee will consider the proposal at a meeting on Monday (December 4).

Cllr Simon Myers, executive councillor for culture, arts and housing at North Yorkshire Council, said:

“The strategic leisure review provides us with an exciting opportunity to transform the delivery of our leisure service and improve outcomes for communities across North Yorkshire.

“What we are recommending puts us at the forefront of a national movement to transform services with a renewed focus on physical and mental health and wider well-being.”

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The recommendations follow the first phase of the council’s strategic leisure review, which includedinput from communities and sports groups, as well as organisations such as Sport England and North Yorkshire Sport.

A cross-party working group of councillors visited sites throughout North Yorkshire and their feedback also informed the proposals.

The council said the proposals will build on current best practice, expertise and experience and aim to transform leisure centres into sport and active well-being hubs.

Meanwhile, a report to the committee also recommends carrying out a leisure investment strategy, which will include a review of each leisure site.

The report added:

“This will build on the work already undertaken from the asset condition surveys and will consider further the condition of each site, future role and sustainability as a part of the new delivery model.”

The move comes as Brimhams Active, which was set up by the former Harrogate Borough Council in 2021, recently completed multi-million pound refurbishments at the Harrogate Leisure and Wellness Centre and Knaresborough Leisure and Wellness Centre.

The company was set up following a strategic review carried out by the borough council, which recommended a local authority controlled company called Brimhams Active be formed to run leisure services in the district.

Its sites include Harrogate Leisure and Wellness Centre, Knaresborough Leisure and Wellness Centre, the Jack Laugher Leisure and Wellness Centre in Ripon and Nidderdale Leisure and Wellness Centre in Pateley Bridge.