Joint Managing Director for Bolton Arena and Inspiring Healthy Lifestyles 

Published on: October 2nd 2023

Bolton Middlebrook Leisure Trust, trading as Bolton Arena Sports Village, and Wigan-based health and wellbeing charity Inspiring Healthy Lifestyles, will share a joint MD in a pioneering move. 

Neil Hutchinson, the current Managing Director of Bolton Arena, has been appointed as the new Joint MD of Inspiring Healthy Lifestyles (IHL). 

Neil has led Bolton Arena Sports Village since 2021. He brings a wealth of experience following more than a decade working in the Charitable Trust sector and more than 30 years of experience in the industry, including as Head of Group Operations at Burnley Leisure. He replaces Chris Derbyshire as MD at IHL, who stood down at the end of September following more than twenty years at the company – two served as Managing Director. 

The two companies have been sharing strategic financial management for the last few years, as well as working together more collaboratively on a number of initiatives. Both charities will continue to operate as individual and separate Charitable Trusts. 

Neil said: “I am absolutely thrilled to be the new Joint MD of these two wonderful charities. “We both share a passion for encouraging our communities to live healthier and more active lifestyles. This will allow both companies to build on the success of the relationship we’ve experienced in recent years and, ultimately, benefit the communities that we work within.” 

IHL is a not-for-profit social enterprise and registered Charity that delivers a range of services, including leisure centres, wellbeing services, theatres and parks on behalf of their Local Authority partners in Cannock Chase, Staffordshire and Selby, North Yorkshire, from their HQ in Wigan. 

Bolton Arena Sports Village is the trading name for Middlebrook Leisure Trust, which is a registered charity. Their mission is to inspire people of all ages, backgrounds and abilities to follow a lifelong passion for sport and healthy lifestyles through the provision of excellent sport & exercise facilities and sports programmes. 

Chair of IHL, Pete Burt, said: “Neil’s vision and leadership skills align perfectly with our company’s values and goals. We believe that his strategic insights and commitment to excellence will drive us to deliver continued improvements in the services we provide. 

“Change brings opportunities, and with Neil on board, we are confident that we are well-positioned for a period of growth, innovation, and continued success. As a Board, we are excited about the fresh perspectives and ideas he will bring to the Charity. We are all looking forward to an exciting future under Neil’s leadership”. 

Chair of Bolton Middlebrook Leisure Trust, Suzanne Hilton, said: “We are excited about furthering our partnership with IHL and the opportunities that joint leadership will bring to both organisations. 

“We are keen to enhance our community impact and provide more health and wellbeing support in our localities. Strengthening this collaboration will support that ambition and provide new opportunities for us all. We look forward to our continued success and growth with Neil’s drive and vision for the future, ably supported by our excellent and committed senior leadership team, who are equally energised by this new opportunity. ”