£1.5m refurbishment underway at Chichester leisure centre

Squash players who were keen to keep courts at the Westgate. Hayley Collins, Nick Harris, Brian Matthews Paul Reed and Andrew Kerry-Bedell ks16000600-1
Squash players who were keen to keep courts at the Westgate. Hayley Collins, Nick Harris, Brian Matthews Paul Reed and Andrew Kerry-Bedell ks16000600-1

A £1.5m refurbishment is underway at Westgate Leisure Centre, Chichester, as part of an overall project by the district council and Everyone Active to encourage more people to take part in physical activity.

The new developments include the provision of a significantly extended gym area, a new hot yoga studio and group cycling studio, a larger group exercise studio and improved café and reception areas.

Works began on the project last month and are expected to finish in October.

It follows on from the centre operating under new management partner Everyone Active.

The award-winning company also operationally manages The Grange Community and Leisure Centre, Midhurst.

The news caused an uproar when it was first announced as the extension of the gym led to the closure of the last public squash courts in Chichester.

Stuart Mills, Everyone Active’s contract manager, said: “This is a particularly exciting time for the centre and it’s great to see the project progressing.

“We’ve had a very promising first month of managing the centres and registered over 8,000 customers with Everyone Active cards.

“We’ve had excellent feedback from visitors so far and, with big improvements works planned for the centres – particularly at Westgate Leisure Centre - we hope to build on this success.

“Everyone Active is passionate about getting local communities more active and the team and I are really excited to be enhancing our offering to customers and provide a range of facilities that will encourage healthier lifestyles.”

“This investment will help to build on the centre’s existing success and provide its customers with improved facilities and services,” says Cllr Gillian Keegan, cabinet member for commercial services at Chichester District Council.

“We look forward to seeing the finished results and seeing the benefits that the new facilities bring.”

In May squash player Lisa Titcomb told the Observer: “The decision to remove the squash courts has been made without proper consultation of local residents or even all members of the centre - only people with the most expensive membership have been consulted.

“The plans appears to be completely driven by money as gym facilities produce a larger profit than squash courts.”

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