Leisure Development

Published on: May 5th 2021

The vast majority of our members manage a wide range of leisure facilities – from your local swimming pool, gym and sports hall, all the way to your local icerink and velodrome. Over a third of Community Leisure UK members also manage green spaces, including parks and playgrounds. Community Leisure UK actively promotes the facilitation of leisure activity by charitable trusts and supports its members through projects, guidance and collaboration with partners on their leisure work.

Projects and Networks


#saveleisure was a digital campaign run by Community Leisure UK, ukactive, CIMSPA and supported by Swim England, Swim Wales and other partners, urging the UK Government to commit relief funding to enable the full reopening and recovery of the public leisure sector accounting for the catastrophic impact of Covid-19. An overview of the key messages of the campaign can be found here. The campaign led to 14 different media articles and radio interviews, and over 366,000 impressions of our #SaveLeisure media campaign on Twitter during June to August 2020.

Covid-19 Funding for Public Leisure

During the Covid-19 pandemic, we worked with a wide range of partners, including Sport England, ukactive, Sport Wales, WSA, sportscotland, Welsh Government, Scottish Government, and DCMS, to raise awareness of the need for funding to public leisure during this global crisis. Consequently, we were a key partner in securing the Sport and Leisure Recovery Fund and Sport Resilience Fund in Wales, and the National Leisure Recovery Fund as well as the Community Leisure Recovery Fund in England. We are continuing to liase on further funding through the National Leisure Recovery Fund, for which our latest briefing can be found here.

National Strategies

National Plan for Sport and Recreation Committee – Call for Evidence

In January 2021, we responded to the consultation of the National Plan for Sport and Recreation Committee on the review of the national plan. Our full response can be viewed here.

Future of Public Leisure

In October 2020, we held roundtable discussions with members to discuss the future of public leisure. The insight report created from these discussions were shared with ukactive to inform their future of leisure work. The report can be viewed here.


Safeguarding in Leisure Checklist

Community Leisure UK is delighted to endorse a new leisure checklist developed by the Ann Craft Trust and the Child Protection in Sport Unit. The Child Protection in Sport Unit and the Ann Craft Trust are the leading experts in safeguarding children and adults. They have designed a checklist with the aim of supporting the leisure industry to meet their safeguarding responsibilities. The resource is primarily for leisure facilities, including independent, single site operators, leisure trusts, local authority facilities and private leisure operators. It could also be adapted to make it relevant to other sectors that provide services to children and adults, such as organisations managing cultural activities and events.

The purpose of the checklist is to provide a framework for facilities to identify the range of safeguards that need to be in place. All children and adults have the right to take part in sport and physical activity safely, free from abuse and neglect. Completing the checklist will help to ensure that facilities are safe spaces for children and adults to take part in sport and physical activity.

Please visit the Ann Craft Trust or the Child Protection in Sport Unit‘s website to access the resource.

Dementia-friendly sport and physical activity guide

Community Leisure UK are proud to have supported Alzheimer’s Society in the development of their Dementia-friendly sport and physical activity guide. The free guide, funded by Sport England and the National Lottery, was created so that anyone working in the sport and physical activity sector can take steps to become more Dementia friendly.

The guide gives an introduction to the scale of the challenge that Dementia poses to society and introduces why it is important to stay active. It also highlights that though this is a guide to become more Dementia friendly, the advice given will create a positive change for people with disabilities and other long-term health conditions as many face the same barriers as people with Dementia.

The guide explains the challenges faced by people with Dementia and goes on in detail on what can be done by sport and physical activity providers to become more Dementia friendly. There are also multiple references to additional resources that one can access.

Importantly, the guide features a wide range of case studies to illustrate the impact of the proposed Dementia friendly changes within sport and physical activity. We are proud to say that many of our members are working towards becoming Dementia friendly and that some are featured within the guide.

For the full guidance, please download a copy from the Alzheimer’s Society website (link opens in a new tab).