29 May 2020
Reading Labour councillor confirms that Greenwich Leisure Ltd. (GLL) have asked Reading council for a significant bailout.
Green councillor Rob White asked at yesterday’s Reading council meeting if GLL had approached Reading Council asking for a bailout due to the financial companies situation at the moment with all of its leisure centres closed. Labour councillor Hoskin confirmed that GLL had asked for a “significant” bailout, and that any decision on this would come back to a council meeting.
Green councillor Rob White said: “We want more detail on this large bailout. Greens support a pool for east Reading but have concerns about the outsourcing of leisure and Labour’s Palmer Park development framework which includes drawings of a large car park on what is now green space.”
GLL is still responsible for Rivermead Leisure centre until 2022 and it runs many other leisure centres around the country. It was due to take over all of Reading’s leisure centres and build a swimming pool at Palmer Park. However, the contract which was due to be finalised in February and start in May has not been signed leaving the future of Reading’s leisure centres up in the air.
Councillor White continued: “The future of leisure will be very different post-COVID-19 and as the outsourcing contract was not signed the Council has an opportunity to really react positively, keep leisure in house, and run it for the people of Reading. The council could even save money by not building a new pool, but refurbishing and re-opening Arthur Hill swimming pool.”
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