Local MP Alan Mak has welcomed new funding from the Government to support Havant Leisure Centre during the Coronavirus pandemic.
In total £265,000 has been awarded to Horizon Leisure, which runs the Havant Leisure Centre, allowing it to bounce back from the pandemic.
The money is part of the Government’s £100 million National Leisure Recovery Fund, to help publicly-owned leisure centres bounce back from the impact of the coronavirus pandemic lockdowns.
Havant Leisure Centre re-opened on Monday 12 April, with gyms, pools, swim school, crèche, gymnastics, pre-school bounce and gym tots re-starting. Group exercise classes are currently scheduled to resume on 17 May.
It follows the Prime Minister’s ambition to ‘build back fitter’ from the coronavirus pandemic, underlined by the multi-billion pound support for the sport and leisure sectors over the past year.
Havant Constituency MP Alan Mak said: “It is great news that the Government has given a substantial funding boost to Havant Leisure Centre. I know throughout the lockdown many people missed being able to visit the gym or play sport so I hope this extra funding ensures a fantastic community asset can continue to operate.
“As we continue on the Government’s roadmap out of lockdown, I hope residents will enjoy using Havant Leisure Centre in a safe and covid secure way.”
This £100 million takes the total Government contribution to local government finance to over £6 billion for the course of the pandemic, which has helped councils to deliver critical local services such as leisure centres and gyms.
The financial support comes on top of the sport and leisure sector benefiting from more than £1.5 billion worth of business support that has been made available by the Government, including the furlough scheme, business rates relief and business interruption loan scheme that has helped many sports clubs and leisure businesses to survive.
Grassroots sports and the physical activity sector are also benefiting from £270 million in emergency funding delivered by Sport England. Earlier this month, the Chancellor announced that the Government will provide an initial £25 million to support the growth of grassroots football, which will be enough to build around 700 new pitches across the UK.
Picture: Alan with Havant Leisure Centre CEO Howard Broad (picture from before Covid)