East Lancashire awarded share of £100 million of National Lottery funding to tackle inactivity in communities

Pennine Lancashire has been chosen by Sport England as a pilot area to work with on a bold new approach to build healthier, more active communities across England.

Around £100million of National Lottery funding will be invested in 12 pilot schemes over four years, to create innovative partnerships that make it easier for people in these communities to access sport and physical activity.

Latest research[i] shows that a quarter of the general population (11.5 million people) are inactive, meaning they do less than 30 minutes of exercise that gets them slightly out of breath each week, with certain groups such as those in lower paid jobs, women and the disabled disproportionately affected.

The Pennine Lancashire pilot area covers a population of 534,600.  The partnership includes seven local authorities; Blackburn with Darwen, Burnley, Hyndburn, Lancashire, Pendle, Ribble Valley, and Rossendale. Also Blackburn with Darwen and East Lancashire Clinical Commissioning Group, East Lancashire Hospitals NHS Trust and Lancashire Care Foundation NHS Trust.  The area’s strong, diverse community and voluntary sector and the many sports clubs will play a key role.

Across Pennine Lancashire there are more than 100,000 people who are physically inactive increasing the chance that they will have heart disease, a stroke, problems breathing, cancers and poor mental wellbeing. Poor physical health links closely with mental ill health; having depression doubles the risk of developing coronary heart disease and people with depression have significantly worse survival rates from cancer and heart disease.

By focusing intensely in 12 areas, Sport England and the local partners want to identify better ways to address these stubborn inequalities and break down the barriers that stop people getting active, such as poor transport, safety, cost and confidence.

It wants to encourage wider, collaborative partnerships which look at how all parts of a community can better work together to help the most inactive – from the transport links and street lighting to the quality of parks and open spaces, to how sport and activity is promoted by GPs.

Pennine Lancashire’s priority group will be almost 40,000 people with depression or anxiety and stress. We know that they are more likely to have other long term illnesses; experience hurdles in finding work and maintaining a job and have a poorer quality of life as a result. We’ll be looking to understand the things that lie behind physical inactivity and develop project and programmes to really support people to develop an active life in an active community with active family and friends. We’ll be focusing on people with poor mental health but also the communities they live in, the places they go, the way they get around and the people they meet.

Councillor Mohammed Khan, leader of Blackburn with Darwen Council, the accountable body for this project, said:

“This is really good news for our area. It means that over the coming years we can work together to help inspire people to become more active in new ways that suit them.

“Mental health issues can affect everybody and this project presents an exciting opportunity to make a big difference to people’s lives.”

Minster for Sport Tracey Crouch welcomed the news at the Local Government Associations’ Sport and Physical Activity conference in London today, Tuesday 5 December.

Minister for Sport Tracey Crouch said:

“Sport is a powerful tool that helps strengthen communities and improves physical and mental health. So it is right that we look to do all we can to encourage people to take part. Sport England will invest up to £100 million of funding, thanks to National Lottery players, to pilot innovative projects in 12 places to get more people from all backgrounds involved in sport and physical activity. We will look to replicate and scale up learning from the pilots across the country. I look forward to seeing these projects in action.”

Jennie Price, Sport England Chief Executive said: “We are delighted that Pennine Lancashire will be working with us on this ground-breaking investment. We want to get to the heart of the issues that stop people being as active as they might like to be, and work alongside every part of the community and the groups and institutions in Pennine Lancashire  that support them.

“This is not all about sport – we’re prepared to look at wider issues like transport, childcare, how easy it is to walk or cycle – whatever that community feels is most relevant to them. The process to be appointed as a pilot area for this work was incredibly competitive, and Pennine Lancashire has emerged from a very strong field. I am really delighted to be working with them.’

[i] Source: Sport England’s Active Lives Survey May 2016- May 2017

Special Offers

Pay Nothing until January

Join one of our fantastic fitness memberships at Hyndburn Leisure for a limited time this December and pay nothing until January.

Quote “Pay Nothing Until January” to claim this offer, which is available on the following memberships:

  • Premier and Feelgood Premier Membership (Gym or Feelgood Suite, New Thermal Suite, Swimming and Unlimited Fitness Classes)
  • Lifestyle and Feelgood Lifestyle Membership (Gym or Feelgood Suite, New Thermal Suite and Swimming
  • Energize Under 18s (Gym, Swimming and Fitness Classes)
  • Aqua (Swimming)

All our memberships benefit from no contract and no joining fee. Call us on 01254 385 945 (Hyndburn) or 885 607 (Mercer Hall) to secure this fantastic offer before it expires.

Terms and Conditions Apply


More Investment at Hyndburn Leisure Centre on the way

Accrington’s biggest leisure facility is set to benefit from more improvements, with a £180k investment in new sauna and steam facilities on the horizon. The current sauna and steam closed last week for around 14 weeks while work is underway.

The luxury health suite has been designed by Pulse Fitness, who successfully tendered for the scheme, and will include a brand new steam room with almost double the capacity, modern changing facilities, feature shower, treatment room and more.

Steve Tanti, Chief Executive of Hyndburn Leisure said, “We have an ongoing improvement plan for our facilities, with the health suite at Hyndburn Leisure Centre next on the list. It’s also an area which has been the focus of customer feedback in recent years so we are happy that we can respond to customer demand and improve this facility.”

The refurbishment comes on the back of other recent major works at the centre, including the refurbishment of the swimming pool and the construction of a new children’s play and party centre, Adventure City. Linda Horsfield, Head of Health and Wellbeing said, “We are delighted to be able to make further improvements to the centre. We are sure that our members will be delighted with the new area and we hope to attract new members to what will be a great facility for the Borough”.

Steve Tanti added, “The public sector leisure industry is changing. Our grant to operate leisure facilities is being reduced year on year, which is why we need to be smart with investments which will lead to savings or new income streams. The new facility will be fantastic and bring in new members to our attractive schemes, such as Premier membership, which includes the gym, swimming pool, new sauna and steam area and over 200 monthly fitness classes all available with no contract and no joining fee.”

The new sauna and steam area will open for business in January 2018. You can keep up to date with the improvements by following the Hyndburn Leisure Centre Facebook page, were regular live updates will be posted.

We appreciate the patience of members as work continues. Please be aware that the sauna and steam facilities at Mercer Hall Leisure Centre are open as usual.


Hyndburn Leisure


Swimming Pool Closure

Due to technical difficulties the pool at Hyndburn Leisure Centre had to close yesterday evening at 17.30. The pool will remain closed until 12.00 noon today.

We apologise for any inconvenience this may cause.


“Adventure” begins at Accrington’s Newest Play Centre

A brand new soft play centre is set to open this week at Hyndburn Leisure Centre in Accrington.

Adventure City brings the best in soft play to what is already a fantastic family location. The scheme began earlier this year and the centre is set to open its doors on Friday 2nd June at 9am.

Half of the sports hall at the leisure centre has been converted to accommodate a new four storey soft play area, which includes a baby zone and a toddler zone, along with the main play area suitable for children up to 11 years old. A new café has also been created which will serve a range of food.

Councillor Ken Moss, Portfolio Holder for Leisure at Hyndburn Borough Council said, “We’re delighted with the end result of the scheme. Adventure City looks amazing, and I can imagine families having a great time here for years to come. The main play zone is spectacular, but we knew it was equally important to create a fun, safe play environment for babies and toddlers, hence the 3 fantastic play zones we have created.”

Steve Tanti, Chief Executive of Hyndburn Leisure, said “The Leisure industry is changing, and we’ve had to consider innovative methods to keep up. Whilst soft play may not be the kind of activity you’re used to seeing in a traditional leisure centre, it still provides children with an excellent opportunity to be physically active and just as importantly, to have some fun with the family. We want to create that same atmosphere at Adventure City. Hyndburn Leisure Centre already provides a fantastic range of activities for all the family and this is another one to add to the list. Adventure City will benefit from complimentary activities which the leisure centre has to offer, such as swimming lessons, gym, sauna and steam and much more, as well as free safe parking”.

Adventure City opens at Hyndburn Leisure Centre at 9am on Friday 2nd June and will be available for birthday parties 7 days a week. Call 01254 385 945 for more information.


New RLSS Lifeguard Course


Monday 3rd April to Saturday 8th April 2017 – 8:30am-5pm each day

Cost is £250 and upon passing the course qualifications include –

National pool lifeguard qualification (NPLQ),

first aid at work (FAW)

Automated external defibrillator (AED)

Call 01254 384 945 for details


Hyndburn Leisure Swimming Pool Opening

Dear Customer

We are pleased to announce that the pool at Hyndburn Leisure Centre will be re-opening on Monday 20th February. We appreciate your patience and hope you are all pleased with the improvements we’ve made.

There are still spaces left on our learn to swim programme beginning 20th February, please call us on 01254 385 945 if you wish to book a space for your child.


Hyndburn Leisure


Swimming Lessons at Hyndburn Leisure Centre

Great News, new swimming lesson courses will begin at Hyndburn Leisure Centre on 20th February after the refurbishment of the pool hall.

Existing customers can contact the centre now on 01254 385 945 to book on the course, we’ll hold your place until the 12th February. We’ll be taking new bookings from the 13th February. Thank you for your loyalty and we look forward to seeing your children back in the pool when we reopen!