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Trafford Council has announced massive plans for a multi-million pound refurbishment of Altrincham, Sale and Stretford Leisure Centres.

The huge investment in the leisure centres supports the Council’s strategy and commitment to get people moving more often to help improve health and reduce obesity.

The investment has been approved by Trafford Council’s Executive as part of its Physical Activity Strategy, ‘Trafford Moving’, and forms part of a borough-wide long term strategy to support the health and wellbeing of local residents through access to affordable, sustainable, accessible and exciting, modern leisure facilities. It also supports the Council’s corporate priorities to reduce health inequalities and to combat our climate crisis.

The large-scale refurbishments will be carried out on a phased arrangement with Altrincham Leisure Centre earmarked as the first to be refurbished followed by both Stretford and Sale.

Altrincham Leisure Centre’s proposed design includes: a 25m pool and 20m leisure pool, a 100-station fitness suite (twice the size of the existing gym), two studios and an immersive spin studio, a four-court sports hall, a purpose-built gymnastic and trampoline hub, a combined lobby and pool viewing café, changing facilities, a spa facility and a wellness assessment room.

The refurbishment designs also hope to include the replacement of the fossil fuel (gas) heating system with Air Sourced Heat Pumps and Solar Panels, which are significantly more sustainable options than the existing systems and support Trafford Council’s action plan to be Carbon Neutral by 2038.

Cllr Liz Patel, Trafford Council’s Executive Member for Culture and Leisure, said: “We are excited to announce this next stage of our leisure centre investment plans. Over the past two years we have all had time to think about our health. The benefits of being active for

our bodies and minds are huge. However, I have met many people who are not physically active, they lack confidence, feel self-conscious, have a long term health condition or are just so busy with family and work they feel they don’t have time to make physical activity a priority.

“Trafford Moving is our plan to help support these residents to be more active in their local communities. There is no ‘right’ way to get active, so this isn’t just about formal sports. A walk round the block with a friend, a dance in the kitchen, armchair stretches – it all counts. Trafford Moving is a new approach that will bring together communities to inspire and help people become more active. The first step in the plan is to ask people what would help them, so please get involved in the consultation early next year.”

“A key commitment of this Council administration is to improve our much-loved centres, bringing them up to a modern, attractive standard. We have made a great start with Move Urmston and are proud to be setting out the next steps in the refurbishment of Altrincham, Sale and Stretford.”

Jo Cherrett is CEO of Trafford Leisure, a community interest company, wholly owned by Trafford Council, which manages the facilities on behalf of Trafford Council and uses any profits and assets for community benefit. She said: “We couldn’t be happier to share the proposals with the people of Trafford and are excited about how these redevelopments will completely transform the facilities we run, future proofing them for generations to come.

“This isn’t just a lick of paint; the plans are extensive and will ensure our spaces are safe, welcoming and inclusive to all. Move Urmston really helps showcase what can be achieved from a refurbishment. We have learnt a lot from the recent and successful redevelopment of move Urmston and are looking forward to supporting Trafford Council in making ‘move Altrincham’, ‘move Sale’ and ‘move Stretford’ a reality.

“A healthy lifestyle is the foundation to a happy life and our vision is to make Trafford the most active borough in the England. These refurbishments will support the Trafford community to move more every day. The range of new facilities, classes, services and equipment in the proposals demonstrate there really is something for everyone.”

The consultation process for Altrincham Leisure Centre will launch in January 2022, enabling the people of Altrincham to have their say on the draft designs.

Jo Cherrett added: “Feedback from previous consultations on the future of Altrincham Leisure Centre will be incorporated into our findings, but we really urge the community to once again share their voice on the council’s proposals so we can move to the next stage swiftly and effectively. Wellness shouldn’t be a privilege. Wellness should be available to all. From a baby having its first swimming lesson to a ninety-year-old participating in our falls prevention classes. The refurbishments ensure that our community can continue to move together.”

The plans will be available to view at Altrincham Leisure Centre, Altrincham Library, online at the Council’s website and at other community hubs in the area.