WIGAN Borough’s new Healthy Living Zone is ready for business.
The complex, which forms one part of the new Wigan Life Centre, represents the first milestone in the council’s decade-long plan to transform the face of public services in our borough.
The impressive new building has been created using a mammoth 4,000 tonnes of concrete and 1,800 tonnes of structural steelwork and a lot of hard work and dedication.
It’s a multi-million pound project made possible thanks to a partnership between the council and other public sector services, private sector finance and construction company Morgan Sindall.
Wigan Council Cabinet Members Cllr Chris Ready (Leisure and Culture), Cllr Susan Loudon (Children and Young People) and Cllr Ged Bretherton (Efficiency) were among the first people to view the new facilities.
Cllr Ready said: “We now have a public service and leisure complex with modern new facilities that the residents of our borough deserve. It will help to bring public services and people closer and we believe it will help to change lives.
“In fact it’s already started because more than 100 people have already found work on the project and many of the companies providing raw materials and services to the centre are from our borough.”
A Bigger Splash
RISING from the ground on the site of the former Wigan International Pool our borough now has a brand new swimming complex that’s just waiting for everyone to dive in.
The Life Centre boasts two brand new swimming pools and some state-of-the-art new facilities that make them accessible to all.
The main pool measures 25m by 21m and will cater for competent swimmers. This pool also has a moving floor which means the depth can be altered to offer a greater range of activities. There is also a smaller (13m by 7.5m) pool designed with children and learner swimmers in mind.
Denise Grundy, who manages the complex, says there’s all sort of activities already planned for new pools, from straightforward swimming to scuba diving!
Denise said: “Many of the clubs that were displaced when the old pool closed, such as the Wigan Wasps are coming back and new clubs such as the Wigan Triathlon Club are moving and we’re busy allocating pool time to them all. Whatever activities will be going on we’ll always make sure there is always plenty of space for people to swim for their own enjoyment.”
The complex has some of the best changing facilities around including two national standard ‘Changing Places’ with height-adjustable changing benches, showers, toilets, washbasins and hoists.
With the centre opening just before 7am each morning for early risers and going right through until 9pm at night, there’s plenty of time for everyone to get in and get active!
You can find out more about all the services at the Healthy Living Zone and how to sign-up to become a Profiles Member visit the Healthy Living Zone (external link) or call the Profiles team at the Wigan Life Centre on: 01942 489611.
Borough Life took a first look at what’s on offer at the Life Centre’s state-of-art Profiles gym and found the facilities are straight from the pages of a science fiction novel.
SWEATING hard, the man jogging on what used to be called a “treadmill” reaches out to tap the crystal clear monitor in front of him.
He’s just finished “tweeting” his friends during an intense workout but casually flicks to watch the BBC news bulletin. Cheeks blowing hard he exhales and with another “tap tap” is browsing on eBay.
For those of us who haven’t been in a gym since Jane Fonda was last on TV it looks more like a scene from the deck of the Starship Enterprise.
But this is the new Profiles Health and Fitness centre at the Wigan Life Centre and it is a couple of light years away from what most people would expect a public gym to be.
“This Technogym equipment is state-of-the-art. It’s the very best and that’s just what the people of Wigan deserve,” said Mike Lyons, WLCT’s head of service for Sport and Leisure.
“We have created a first class Health and Fitness centre that stands up to anything in the private sector but at a cheaper cost,” he added.
Visitors can plug their iPod into each cardio vascular station, so they can watch a film, listen to music or interact on social media. A computer tracks the workout and even sets goals, acting as a hi-tech personal trainer.
Logging on to a computer at home enables them to see how good – or poor – a workout has been.
Since this type of equipment was installed at Robin Park Indoor Sports Centre earlier this year memberships have rocketed by 62 per cent.
The Profiles health and fitness centre based in the new Wigan Life Centre on Library Street also includes a steam and sauna room, fitness studios, gold standard disabled facilities, learners pool and of course the new 25 x 21 metre pool – complete with a moving floor which allows the depth to be adjusted – right at its heart.
Science fiction legend Arthur C.Clarke once wrote that “any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic” – which rather aptly sums up Wigan’s new public facilities…..just magic!
Life Centre – what next?
Face of Wigan by Rick Kirby
With the South Site ready for action, work is continuing to progress on the North Site of this landmark project.
This site will include a One Stop Shop for all public services in the borough, a Neighbourhood Zone, a modern new library and information services.
The centre will bring together a whole of services offered by the council and its partners including benefits advice and claims, housing and homelessness services, voluntary and community sector space, adult, and children’s services. It is anticipated that the North Site will open in early 2012.