Switching leisure contractors saves North Hertfordshire taxpayers £400,000 a year

PUBLISHED: 09:50 18 January 2010 | UPDATED: 16:14 11 May 2010

Ian Morton (left) and Cllr Ian Knighton

Ian Morton (left) and Cllr Ian Knighton

ON to a sporting winner is North Herts District Council (NHDC). It has notched up savings of £400,000 a year by switching the contractors to manage Royston Leisure Centre and Hitchin Swimming Centre/Archers Health & Fitness. Contracts have been awarded to

ON to a sporting winner is North Herts District Council (NHDC).

It has notched up savings of £400,000 a year by switching the contractors to manage Royston Leisure Centre and Hitchin Swimming Centre/Archers Health & Fitness.

Contracts have been awarded to the locally-based leisure management company Stevenage Leisure Ltd (SLL)

At a time of severe financial difficulty for all councils, this will ease pressure as NHDC starts to contemplate the new council tax rate for 2010/11, said a council spokesman.

SLL already works in partnership with NHDC, having managed the Letchworth leisure contract on behalf of the council since 2005. This contract includes the North Herts Leisure Centre, Letchworth Outdoor Pool and Fearnhill Sports Centre, and is part of 15 leisure facilities that the company currently manages in partnership with four local authorities.

NHDC, which owns all three centres, appointed SLL after putting the contracts out to tender.

Cllr Ian Knighton, NHDC portfolio holder for leisure, said: "We would like to congratulate Stevenage Leisure, with whom we have worked very well in their existing contract. DC Leisure, which has run the Hitchin and Royston sites, has given excellent service but we have now gone through a fair tender process and feel our decision represents the best value for money for North Herts residents."

Ian Morton, SLL's managing director, said: "We are delighted to have been awarded these prestigious contracts, which we believe are a reflection of the excellent efforts of our staff currently working within North Hertfordshire.

"We are looking forward to further developing our partnership with North Hertfordshire District Council for the benefit of the whole community. Managing all five sites gives us a unique opportunity to deliver a co-ordinated leisure service across the district.

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