Public consultation pauses jobs cuts at Sandy Sports Centre

Sandy Sports Centre ENGPNL00120140402162043
Sandy Sports Centre ENGPNL00120140402162043

Staff at Sandy Sports and Community Centre who faced losing their jobs have been given a reprieve while a public consultation takes place.

The staff at the Engayne Avenue centre, based in what is now Sandy Secondary School, had been under notice of possible redundancy.

But Central Bedfordshire Council says the talks have been paused to allow a public consultation on leisure services in Sandy.

A spokesman said: “We are discussing with the school and our leisure contractors, Stevenage Leisure Limited, to see how best the leisure services at Sandy can be continued, and to minimise any impact on customers and Stevenage Leisure staff as far as possible.

“We will be consulting with the public on what and how we might provide leisure services in Sandy in the future. Stevenage Leisure had started consulting with its staff, but that is now paused until a public consultation process has been completed. All bookings at Sandy will go on as usual and no changes will take place before a consultation process has taken place.”

In a letter to staff, seen by the Chronicle, contractors Stevenage Leisure Ltd (SLL) said: “CBC has given notice to Sandy Upper School [now secondary school] that the sports facilities will revert to school management at the proposed date of October 28, 2018 and that SLL’s management contract will be limited to management of the gym and the Jenkins Pavilion.

“Actions will be taken to physically cut off the school buildings from the gym area and SLL’s activities will reduce as a result.”

The letter also states the leisure operation at Sandy needs to reduce operational costs to make it affordable to CBC and SLL.

Local clubs has also been getting in touch with the Chronicle to say they have been told facilities will no longer be available at the end of next month.

SLL also runs several other leisure facilities in Bedfordshire including Houghton Regis Leisure Centre, Tiddenfoot Leisure Centre, The Grove Theatre in Dunstable and Silsoe Community Sports Centre.

>Have you been affected by the changes? Contact us at editorial@biggleswadechronicle.co,uk