LEISURE facilities across the country are warning that they are facing the 'final straw' without greater support amid the ongoing energy crisis.

A coalition of more than 200 groups from the health, sport, fitness and leisure sectors have signed a letter to Prime Minister Rishi Sunak pleading for continued support with the energy-costs relief scheme for the UK's swimming pools, leisure centres, community facilities and gyms come the end of March.

Better Leisure (which manages over 268 facilities across the UK) previously said that energy bills had tripled as of late.

Parent company GLL currently operates pools in Carlisle, Penrith, Appleby, Cockermouth, Workington, Whitehaven, Kendal and Ulverston.


GLL previously said that the four centres in Allerdale could be run for around £400,000 - but in 2023, costs were expected to rise to just under £1million.

For much of the leisure industry, the removal of the energy-costs relief scheme poses a 'real-threat'. 

The charitable social enterprise is among organisations stressing that payment pressures could become unmanageable in many places nationally - causing closures and service cuts - if Westminster leaves them to bear the full brunt of bills.

A spokesperson for charitable social enterprise GLL said: "Previous support from Government acknowledged the importance the leisure sector plays in keeping the nation fit and active and reducing pressure on the NHS.

"From April 1, GLL - along with all public leisure operators - will no longer benefit from the Energy Bill Relief Scheme and will no longer be protected from energy price spikes.

"For generations we’ve taken for granted that we all have easy access to a local pool, where we can learn to swim, exercise and socialise.

"Without central government help, the future of some public swimming pools and small community-led pools could be under real threat. 

"We urge pool users, councils and others to back the lobby on Government and take part in The Big Swim on Friday which is drawing attention to this crisis. Visit saveourpools.org for more information," they said. 

READ MORE: Opening hours slashed for leisure centres due to 'unprecedented' energy costs