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Abbeycroft Leisure chief ready for reopenings as Brandon Leisure Centre's refurbishments still on track

The chief executive of Abbeycroft Leisure has spoken about the strain on the leisure industry during the pandemic and his excitement at the prospect of reopening facilities on April 12.

Warren Smyth’s comments come after it was announced the 44-week first phase of a £1.97million project to refurbish Brandon Leisure Centre has been completed on time and will reopen with the rest of the centres.

He said: “The leisure industry has had a very challenging 12 months indeed and we are no exception. An average leisure centre costs £60,000 a month, even when closed, so financially this has made it difficult for some operators to survive.

Brandon Leisure Centre, in Church Road. Picture by Mark Westley.
Brandon Leisure Centre, in Church Road. Picture by Mark Westley.

“Some financial support from Government has been received through the National Leisure Recovery Fund, which has focused on reopening rather than the costs of closure. So naturally, we are very grateful for the essential support from West Suffolk Council and their continued investment in leisure centres such as Brandon and the new Mildenhall Hub.”

The final stages of Brandon Leisure Centre’s upgrade will see the introduction of a Shapemaster suite, new café, reception and health treatment rooms, with completion on the project set to be in September.

Warren said: “Despite all the challenges, we are still very excited about the future and we are extremely hopeful that we will be given the green light to reopen on April 12.

“We have had to make many changes to our operations during the pandemic to remain Covid secure, and these will still be in place when we reopen.”

To find out more and for details on other Abbeycroft Leisure sites, go to www.acleisure.com.

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