Members gave consideration to report which sought to provide an update on the implementation of the Leisure Contract and progress to-date.
The Leisure Contract had begun on 1 June 2018 and an independent audit of the Leisure Contract award was carried out by Assurance Lincolnshire who had found that the procurement process and subsequent award were robust and risks were well managed.
The Leisure Contract had been transformational for the Council in terms of its finances and instead of paying for leisure services the contract now generated in the region of £136,000pa.
The refurbishment of the Leisure Centre had commenced at the start of the contract and was due for completion at the end of the month. The Health and Well-being hub had been officially opened in September and had demonstrated significant throughput to-date and generated excellent feedback.
Work was currently taking place on a range of health and wellbeing programmes which were due for launch this Easter.
The Active Seniors hub had been officially launched on 1 October and this area was also proving very popular. As a result the programme was being extended. In addition to the use by individuals this area was also used by community groups and organisations.
The outreach service was headed up by the Active Communities Manager and the report detailed progress to-date as well as the programmes currently operating. Pilot schemes had been launched in Sudbrooke and Scothern and discussions were currently taking place with Hemswell and Glentham.
In relation to Market Rasen Leisure Centre a site had been secured and designs completed. A report was expected before the Planning Committee on 6 February.
As well as delivering on financial objectives the contract outcomes were aligned to health improvements which were grouped into:
* Encouraging people to be more active more often
* Engaging with people from specific groups to increase the frequency that they are active
* Delivering a positive customer experience
In addition to the contract outcomes there was a robust series of operational performance standards. During year one of the contract, baseline data was being collected and targets for improvement would be set on an annual basis.
Members were invited to review the facilities by way of a tour being held on 7 March 2019.
The Challenge and Improvement Committee had reviewed the report and had recommended that a further report be submitted at the end of year one, however as previously advised, base line data was currently being established and it was considered that a report at the end of year one would demonstrate nothing further to Members.
Debate ensued and Opposition Members strongly disputed the figures contained in Section 2 of the report.
Assurance was given that the statistics had been thoroughly integrated and were an accurate reflection of the visitors seen. In response to further suggestions that the statistics were not accurate Officers outlined the methodology which had been used and the extended opening hours of the centre.
Opposition Members were of the view it would not be feasible for the centre to receive so many visitors without there being issues with car parking. Officers confirmed parking had become difficult but it was anticipated this would be resolved once the site cabins were removed and would continue to be monitored.
Members indicated they would like a greater breakdown of the service users, and the services they were accessing, how many people were swimming, how many were using the short mat bowls facility how many were using the Active Senior hub.
Officers undertook to provide the requested data to all Members of the Committee.
Members also requested information on the number of groups using the centre and details of any new activities on offer, making reference to West Lindsey’s participation rates being at an all-time low.
In response, Officers advised they continued to work with Active Lincolnshire to increase participation rates, the outreach programme was in its infancy and baseline data was being collected so improvement targets could be accurately set.
In response to comments, Officers acknowledged that there were still matters that needed to be addressed, such as pool side cleanliness and the spectator areas. Assurance was offered that these matters continued to be raised and would not be left unresolved. The Authority was continuing to support the Bowls Club in appropriate ways and Members had also recently approved developments at the Roses Sports Club, all of which added to the leisure offer across the District.
Following further suggestions that the figures were inaccurate, these were checked by the Financial Services Manager, who was present at the meeting, and who confirmed based on the methodology used, the figures were accurate.
RESOLVED that: -
(a) the contents of the report and the work undertaken since the award of the Leisure Contract be supported; and
(b) having considered the recommendation from the Challenge and Improvement Committee, a further report, which monitors performance of the agreed targets, be received at the end of Year Two of the Contract.