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UK Leisure Centres and Swimming Pools market report

Everything you need to make the right decisions

Providing the most comprehensive and up-to-date information and analysis of the Leisure Centres and Swimming Pools market, and the behaviours, preferences and habits of the consumer.

Mintel has the answers you’re looking for

What are the key challenges facing the industry and how fast are its rates of growth? Who is the consumer and what do they want? Where are the opportunities, where are the risks and what lies ahead?

Products covered in this Report

This Report covers local authority-owned leisure centres and swimming pools, including facilities run on a ‘dual use’ basis, eg facilities housed within schools etc that are available for use by the public at certain times of the day or week. Market size is based on expenditure in publically-owned leisure site.

Despite often being in direct competition with public leisure centre facilities, private health and fitness clubs are excluded from the coverage of this Report, as are all other private facilities that are not open to the general public, such as those reserved for employees, or association or trade union members.

Where reference is made to data on public sports centres sourced from The Leisure Database Company, the use of the term ‘Public Sports Centre’ relates to both availability and core facilities. In terms of availability it has been refined to exclude those venues not available to the general public on a ‘pay-and-play’ basis or for club use only (usually applicable to educational-based sites). The Leisure Database Company definition also refers specifically to a venue with one or more of the following core facilities: health and fitness, swimming pool (indoor or outdoor) or sports hall.

Expert analysis from a specialist in the field

Written by Helen Fricker, a leading analyst in the Leisure sector, her extensive knowledge delivers in-depth commentary and analysis to highlight current trends and add expert context to the numbers.

With more public leisure centres and swimming pools being run out-of-house by external companies, the standard of these facilities may improve. All the signs are there for increased usage; both consumers and the Government appear to be placing greater focus on leading active lives which should benefit leisure centres. Helen Fricker
Associate Director - Leisure

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Table of contents

  1. Overview

    • What you need to know
      • Products covered in this Report
      • Executive Summary

          • The market
            • Dip in site numbers reduces market size
              • Figure 1: Forecast of leisure centre and swimming pool revenues, 2012-22
            • Companies and brands
              • Local authorities continue to turn to Leisure Trusts
                • Figure 2: Leisure centre and swimming pool numbers, by operator type, April 2017
              • GLL continue to lead
                • The consumer
                  • Current usage is stable and consideration increases in previous users
                    • Figure 3: Activities done in the last 12 months, July 2017
                    • Figure 4: Previous usage of public leisure centres and future consideration in non-users, July 2017
                  • Increase in swimming with others and exercising in gym area
                    • Figure 5: Activities done at a public leisure centre or swimming pool in the last 12 months, July 2017
                  • Fitness classes most sought
                    • Figure 6: Interest in participating in leisure centre activities, ranked by interest, July 2017
                  • Two in three interested in joining a public leisure centre or swimming pool
                    • Figure 7: Interest in public leisure centre and swimming pool membership types, July 2017
                  • Wi-Fi and latest tech in demand
                    • Figure 8: Attitudes towards media and technology in leisure centres and swimming pools, July 2017
                  • Nutritional advice welcome and additional services appeal
                    • Figure 9: Attitudes towards additional services at leisure centres and swimming pools, July 2017
                  • What we think
                  • Issues and Insights

                    • Are wellness hubs the answer to increasing leisure centre use and public health?
                      • The facts
                        • The implications
                          • Should public leisure facilities try and replicate boutiques and private health and fitness clubs?
                            • The facts
                              • The implications
                              • The Market – What You Need to Know

                                • Dip in site numbers reduces market size
                                  • Increase in external management for public facilities
                                    • More focus on physical activity
                                      • Increase in sports participation
                                      • Market Size and Forecast

                                        • Dip in site numbers reduces market size
                                          • Figure 10: Leisure centre and swimming pool revenues, 2012-22
                                        • Forecast
                                          • Figure 11: Forecast of leisure centre and swimming pool revenues, 2012-22
                                        • Forecast methodology
                                        • Market Segmentation

                                          • Centre numbers decline
                                            • Figure 12: Leisure centres and swimming pool numbers, by type of facility, 2014-17
                                          • Revenue mainly from sports
                                            • Figure 13: Leisure centre and swimming pool revenues, by segment, 2014-17
                                        • Market Drivers

                                            • More focus on physical activity
                                              • More UK gym members than ever before
                                                • Increase in sports participation
                                                  • Appetite to do more activities
                                                    • Figure 14: Participation and interest in sport and exercise related activities, October 2016
                                                  • Active retirement of increasing focus
                                                    • Figure 15: Lifestyle attitudes, October 2016
                                                • Companies and Brands – What You Need to Know

                                                  • Local authorities continue to turn to Leisure Trusts
                                                    • GLL continue to lead
                                                      • Apps driving healthy behaviour
                                                        • Technology making activity more accessible n
                                                          • Operators aiming to rival private gyms and boutiques
                                                            • Getting Britain moving
                                                            • Market Share

                                                              • Local authorities continue to turn to Leisure Trusts
                                                                • Figure 16: Leisure centre and swimming pool numbers, by operator type, 2014-17
                                                              • GLL continue to lead
                                                                • Figure 17: Leading operators of leisure centres and swimming pools, by turnover and centre numbers, July 2017
                                                            • Companies and Brands

                                                              • Greenwich Leisure Limited
                                                                • Figure 18: Greenwich Leisure Limited key financials, 2013-16
                                                              • Sports and Leisure Management Ltd
                                                                • Figure 19: Sports and Leisure Management Ltd key financials, 2013-16
                                                              • Places for People Limited
                                                                • Figure 20: Places for People Limited key financials, 2013-16
                                                              • Fusion Lifestyle
                                                                • Figure 21: Fusion Lifestyle key financials, 2013-16
                                                              • Parkwood Leisure Limited
                                                                • Figure 22: Parkwood Leisure Limited key financials, 2014-16
                                                              • Freedom Leisure
                                                                • Serco Leisure Operating Limited
                                                                  • Figure 23: Serco Leisure Operating Limited key financials, 2012-15
                                                              • Launch Activity and Innovation

                                                                • Apps driving healthy behaviour
                                                                  • Technology making activity more accessible n
                                                                    • Operators aiming to rival private gyms and boutiques
                                                                      • Getting Britain moving
                                                                        • Linking physical and mental health
                                                                        • The Consumer – What You Need to Know

                                                                          • Current usage is stable
                                                                            • Growth in consideration in previous users
                                                                              • Increase in swimming with others and exercising in gym area
                                                                                • Fitness classes most sought
                                                                                  • Two in three interested in joining a public leisure centre or swimming pool
                                                                                    • Wi-Fi and latest tech in demand
                                                                                      • Nutritional advice welcome and additional services appeal
                                                                                      • Leisure Centre and Swimming Pool Usage and Exercise Participation

                                                                                        • Current usage is stable
                                                                                            • Figure 24: Activities done in the last 12 months, July 2017
                                                                                          • Growth in consideration in previous users
                                                                                              • Figure 25: Previous usage of public leisure centres and future consideration in non-users, July 2017
                                                                                          • Participation and Interest in Leisure Centre Activities

                                                                                            • Increase in swimming with others and exercising in gym area
                                                                                                • Figure 26: Activities done at a public leisure centre or swimming pool in the last 12 months, July 2017
                                                                                              • Fitness classes most sought
                                                                                                • Figure 27: Interest in participating in leisure centre activities, ranked by interest, July 2017
                                                                                              • Decline in overall activity consideration
                                                                                                • Figure 28: Changes in consideration of leisure centre and swimming pool activities, 2016-17, July 2017
                                                                                            • Membership Consideration

                                                                                              • Two in three interested in joining a public leisure centre or swimming pool
                                                                                                  • Figure 29: Interest in public leisure centre and swimming pool membership types, July 2017
                                                                                              • Attitudes towards Media and Technology in Leisure Centres and Swimming Pools

                                                                                                • Wi-Fi and latest tech in demand
                                                                                                    • Figure 30: Attitudes towards media and technology in leisure centres and swimming pools, July 2017
                                                                                                • Attitudes towards Additional Service at Leisure Centres and Swimming Pools

                                                                                                  • Nutritional advice welcome
                                                                                                    • Figure 31: Attitudes towards additional services at leisure centres and swimming pools, July 2017
                                                                                                  • Additional services appeal
                                                                                                    • Figure 32: Attitudes towards additional services at leisure centres and swimming pools, July 2017
                                                                                                    • Figure 33: Behaviours and attitudes towards leisure centres/swimming pools – CHAID – Tree output, July 2017
                                                                                                • Appendix – Data Sources, Abbreviations and Supporting Information

                                                                                                    • Abbreviations
                                                                                                      • Consumer research methodology
                                                                                                      • Appendix – Market Size and Forecast

                                                                                                        • Forecast methodology
                                                                                                            • Figure 34: Forecast of leisure centre and swimming pool revenues, 2017-22