Proposals to improve the health and wellbeing of the borough by transforming Robin Park Arena, Robin Park Leisure Centre and Central Park have moved one step closer.
At its monthly cabinet meeting, councillors agreed to enter into negotiations with Wigan Warriors to assess the feasibility of the club moving its Central Park operations to Robin Park Arena. Taking on the lease for the arena will not only save the council £241,000 a year in subsidy and maintenance costs, but will also increase the accessibility of the arena, while ensuring current users are unaffected.
If agreed the plans will see Central Park being further developed to incorporate a Special Educational Needs and Disability (SEND) school to address the growing demand for places in the borough as part of the Children’s Transformation Plan. The excellent Sport and Leisure facilities at Central Park will receive further investment and will still be available for the local community to access. Fur Clempt will remain on site and Wigan Warriors, Wigan Council and Inspiring healthy lifestyles will proactively explore opportunities to work with more community groups to expand the offer.
The proposal will increase the use of the Robin Park Arena which, under Wigan Warriors, will become a world class sports and community leisure facility. Inspiring healthy lifestyles, who currently occupy the arena, will relocate all its leisure, health and fitness services to the sports centre which will undergo a major transformation, featuring a bigger and better gymnastics facility, the latest in gym technology and cloud based wellness systems and a brand new indoor cycling studio.
Councillor Jim Moodie, lead member for leisure and public health at Wigan Council, said: “As part of The Deal for Health and Wellness, Wigan Council committed to providing more opportunities to help residents get active and healthy in their local communities.”
“Research shows that removing the physical barriers to exercise can have massive benefits to the NHS by preventing people getting ill later on in life. These proposals support that ambition and will help us ensure our residents are able to lead long and healthy lives.”
Ian Lenagan, chairman of Wigan Warriors, said: “We are delighted to be working with Wigan Council and Inspiring healthy lifestyles to explore opportunities to develop both Robin Park and Central Park.
“We have developed a strong partnership over the last six years which has led to some creative thinking on how to further improve availability of sport, community leisure and education facilities based around the Wigan Warriors brand.
“This move is progressive and builds upon the strong foundations that have been developed at the Central Park facility. These proposals support our new club strategy and will significantly enhance our Youth, Sport, Education and Community offers based at Robin Park.”