GL1 leisure centre's shock closure leaves 150 out of work

29 Sep 2023

Gloucester’s leisure centre has suddenly closed with the loss of more than 150 jobs.

The announcement to shut the GL1 Leisure Centre and Oxstalls Sports Park comes after charitable trust Aspire went into liquidation.

The two sports centres were being run by the trust on behalf of Gloucester City Council and it is feared they might not reopen for a year.

It means the Bruton Way gym and a swimming pool will be out of action, along with the tennis courts, outdoor sports pitches and all other Aspire-run facilities at Oxstalls.

Councillor Jeremy Hilton, leader of Gloucester Liberal Democrats, said: “The liquidation of Aspire Trust is yet another financial disaster placed upon Gloucester City Council by the Conservative administration.

“It’s like Groundhog Day. They are hopeless.

“Around 150 people have lost their jobs and it seems that GL1 Sports Centre and Oxstalls Tennis Centre will be shut for at least 12 months.

“People who have paid up front for use of the leisure facilities could lose all their money. It’s so unfair.

“The Conservative obsession with outsourcing its services isn’t working. Financial transparency is opaque. Scrutiny is awful. Now they want to get another contractor in. The Tories never learn.

“The council needs to reconsider bringing the leisure services back in house. Running the services with our own staff.

“No wonder Gloucester City Council has been described as the ‘Vanishing Council’ – it can’t even keep a swimming pool open."