Swansea Council is set to extend its pandemic funding for its key leisure facilities to keep up their high-quality services for residents across the city.
The council’s ruling cabinet is due to discuss a possible extension of funding arrangements for its contract-managed premises, including the LC, community leisure centres, the Wales National Pool Swansea (WNPS) and Plantasia.
The support could be in place until March next year and would cover the facilities’ pandemic-related losses and recovery plans.
Robert Francis-Davies, the council’s cabinet member for investment, regeneration and tourism, said: “Our leisure facilities are key to creating an active and healthy Swansea now and in future – these are our buildings, managed for us by our partners, and it’s right that they should be supported financially during what remains a tremendously difficult time.
“The past year has been challenging but all partners have performed well, kept costs as low as possible and have prioritised staff and customer safety, following Government guidance throughout.
“The aim for the next two years is for all to return to pre-Covid trading position.
“The recovery will not be easy; the months ahead will be uncertain, with continued restrictions. In some parts of England we’ve noticed that leisure services are closing down because of a lack of funding.
“But as we emerge from the pandemic Swansea Council intends to stand side-by-side with our partners to support these much-needed facilities which are vital to the health and wellbeing of so many in our communities including children, families and older people.”
The services are run for residents by a series of partnership arrangements between the council and third parties, and at the moment all are operating at reduced capacity in order to keep visitors safe. At WNPS, for example, sessions are time-limited so as many users as possible can get to swim.
LC and Plantasia are operating with booking systems and adapted layouts to help keep local communities safe.
The LC and community leisure centres are run by not-for-profit trust Freedom Leisure. Plantasia is operated by contractor Parkwood Leisure.
WNPS is run by a trust and funded by a partnership agreement between Swansea University and the council. Both have contributed to its upkeep during the pandemic.
The pandemic has seen all these Swansea operations close temporarily and furlough many staff. Safety checks and routine maintenance have continued.
The leisure industry and Welsh Local Government Association recommend that those running such public facilities are supported by local councils.
When the cabinet meets on June 17, it will be asked to underwrite financial deficits for the services’ costs, in relation to their Swansea operations.
Continued financial support through to next March could reach around £2.3m. The council will work to claim much of this back from the Welsh Government as part of the country’s pandemic recovery plans.
(Lead image: Swansea Council)
Council describes 10 year-old Leon as ‘Environment Hero’ for Whitland litter picks
How one woman’s tragic loss helped save a child given just hours to live
Children’s hospice say they’re determined to keep doors open despite energy crisis
Council announces nearly 90 projects to tackle post-pandemic cost of living crisis
Free ‘Grow How’ session to help gardeners make the most of autumn gardening
Llanelli Half Marathon: Running on a high
Strictly Come Dancing: Ellie Simmonds talks first dances, fake tan and facing off for Glitterball glory
Cleaner water linked with smaller cockles that die younger, research on Burry Inlet reveals
West Wales women up for awards in leading Welsh ceremony
Top Welsh chefs and hospitality professionals to judge new competition
Bus drivers set to walk out in First Cymru pay dispute
From stamps and coins to passports and police helmets: What will change following the death of the Queen
Gorseinon pub overlooking rugby and cricket club could become flats
Smoke seen for miles as former Cinderella nightclub on Mumbles Pier catches fire
Council suspends non-essential services on September 19
Pembrokeshire crowds ready to welcome 10th IRONMAN Wales
Plans for apartments on former Neath Workingmen’s Club site
Tributes paid to HM Queen Elizabeth II as communities prepare mourning arrangements
Transport strikes postponed following Monarch’s death
28 year-old Port Talbot stroke survivor takes on mountain climb after learning to walk again
Bridgend4 days ago
Bus strikes back on after Queen’s funeral postponement
Bridgend3 days ago
Bus strike cancelled after First Cymru and unions come to agreement
Motoring6 days ago
Coastguard release dramatic pictures of car after it falls off cliff at Mumbles car park
Llanelli5 days ago
Everything you need to know ahead of the M&D Care Llanelli Half Marathon
South Wales Police5 days ago
Police want to speak with this man after assault in Uplands
Cardiff Airport6 days ago
Cardiff Airport restarts Italian flights and gets new direct Romanian destination
Business6 days ago
TUI Invests in team with help of Gower College Swansea
Police and Crime6 days ago
Elderly not the biggest victims to fraud: Expert tips on avoiding scams online