"Plenty of exciting developments are in the pipeline," leisure company Everyone Active has promised after securing a 10-year contract to manage council-owned leisure facilities in North Hertfordshire.

From April 1, Everyone Active will take over the management of North Herts Leisure Centre in Letchworth, Archers gym in Hitchin, the Hitchin Swimming Centre, Royston Leisure Centre, Fearnhill Sports Centre and the outdoor pools in Hitchin and Letchworth.

The Comet: Leisure facilities owned by North Herts Council, including Hitchin Swimming Centre, will be run by Everyone Active from April 1.Leisure facilities owned by North Herts Council, including Hitchin Swimming Centre, will be run by Everyone Active from April 1. (Image: North Herts Council)

Duncan Jefford, regional director at Everyone Active, said: "We are delighted to officially begin our partnership with North Herts Council soon and are looking forward to many successful years ahead.

"The fantastic centres within this contract are so important for health and wellbeing in local communities and, with plenty of exciting developments in the pipeline, we are incredibly privileged to be chosen to manage them.

"We look forward to creating a close, impactful relationship with the council in the coming years, alongside helping as many people as possible to get active."

Stevenage Leisure Limited (SLL) - which has managed North Herts Council's leisure facilities for the last 14 years in Royston and Hitchin, and 10 years in Letchworth - was unsuccessful in its bid to continue running the district’s leisure centres.

This is the third council contract SLL has lost to Everyone Active in recent months, with Stevenage Borough Council and Central Bedfordshire Council making the switch in 2023.

Leisure centre staff who work for SLL will be transferred to Everyone Active.

Councillor Steve Jarvis, executive member for leisure, said: "The process for awarding the management contract for our leisure facilities was rigorous and exhaustive.

"We were determined to get the best possible deal for our residents, and I believe we have done that with our comprehensive partnership with Everyone Active.

"During the course of our partnership, there will be some exciting improvements to look forward to, not least the building of a gym extension at Royston Leisure Centre.

"We would like to thank SLL for their hard work over the last 14 years and their continuous efforts to improve our facilities."

The Comet: Royston Leisure Centre is included in the contract.Royston Leisure Centre is included in the contract. (Image: North Herts Council)

Cllr Mick Debenham, the council’s deputy executive member for leisure, added: "In deciding on the contract award, we evaluated the cost and quality aspects of the bids, alongside the social value which they will bring.

"Everyone Active offered the most financially advantageous bid and also excelled in terms of quality of service and innovation.

"We look forward to working with them to further enhance our leisure facilities, which are among our most important community assets and greatly valued by our residents."

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Everyone Active will contact existing members of the leisure centres from mid-March 2024. All memberships will automatically transfer over to Everyone Active and customers will not have to re-join.