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The fitness industry can drive the UK’s economic recovery from the pandemic, says Huw Edwards
26 Nov 2020 . BY Tom Walker
Edwards said the fitness and leisure sector provides a 'unique proposition', given that it can drive both economic and health benefits / ukactive
This year's UK government Spending Review, announced in Parliament by chancellor Rishi Sunak on 25 November, offers the physical activity sector opportunities to "transform communities", according to industry body, ukactive.

In his statement to Parliament, Sunak revealed the government's spending priorities and briefed MPs about the state of the UK economy. He also offered the latest forecasts for the UK's public finances – which have been battered by the pandemic.

According to Sunak, the UK economy is expected to shrink by 11.3 per cent this year – the largest fall for more than 300 years. Unemployment is expected to reach 7.5 per cent by summer 2021, with 2.6 million people out of work.

The UK is, however, expected to return to pre-crisis levels of economic output by the fourth quarter of 2022.

Measures to aid recovery, announced by Sunak, include cutting the overseas aid budget by about £4bn and diverting it to create a new £4bn "levelling up" fund, which will pay for upgrading local infrastructure across the UK.

A further £220m will be allocated to help local areas prepare for the introduction of the UK Shared Prosperity Fund. The new fund will replace the European Union structural funding, following the UK’s departure from the EU at the end of this year.

The Health budget in England will also rise by £6bn, including an extra £500m for mental health services.

For business struggling with the pandemic, there was some positive news as the rates multiplier will be frozen for the 2021-22 financial year.

Responding to the announcements, Huw Edwards, CEO of ukactive, highlighted the role the physical activity sector can play in the UK's economic recovery.

“Today’s Spending Review offers opportunities for our sector to support the transformation of communities and especially to shape the future of the high street, through the UK Shared Prosperity Fund and the Levelling Up Fund," Edwards said.

“Our challenging economic forecast requires the Chancellor to look for the greatest return on investment for the funding decisions he makes.

“In this respect, the fitness and leisure sector provides a unique proposition, given that it can drive both economic and health benefits, avoiding any trade-off between the two.

“The latest evidence from Sport England and Sheffield Hallam University shows a return of £4 for every £1 spent on community sport and physical activity.

“We want to work with the Government on a plan to put sport and physical activity at the heart of the nation’s renewal.

“We would like to see a tailored support package for the sector that not only includes funding, but also stimulus to encourage growth in 2021 – a combination of business rate relief, VAT exemptions, and incentives that drive more people back into activity.

“This moment represents a real opportunity to invest in a sector that can provide a major return on investment for our nation’s economic, social, mental and physical health,” said Edwards.
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Jobs   News   Products   Magazine
PRODUCT NEWS
The fitness industry can drive the UK’s economic recovery from the pandemic, says Huw Edwards
26 Nov 2020 . BY Tom Walker
Edwards said the fitness and leisure sector provides a 'unique proposition', given that it can drive both economic and health benefits / ukactive
This year's UK government Spending Review, announced in Parliament by chancellor Rishi Sunak on 25 November, offers the physical activity sector opportunities to "transform communities", according to industry body, ukactive.

In his statement to Parliament, Sunak revealed the government's spending priorities and briefed MPs about the state of the UK economy. He also offered the latest forecasts for the UK's public finances – which have been battered by the pandemic.

According to Sunak, the UK economy is expected to shrink by 11.3 per cent this year – the largest fall for more than 300 years. Unemployment is expected to reach 7.5 per cent by summer 2021, with 2.6 million people out of work.

The UK is, however, expected to return to pre-crisis levels of economic output by the fourth quarter of 2022.

Measures to aid recovery, announced by Sunak, include cutting the overseas aid budget by about £4bn and diverting it to create a new £4bn "levelling up" fund, which will pay for upgrading local infrastructure across the UK.

A further £220m will be allocated to help local areas prepare for the introduction of the UK Shared Prosperity Fund. The new fund will replace the European Union structural funding, following the UK’s departure from the EU at the end of this year.

The Health budget in England will also rise by £6bn, including an extra £500m for mental health services.

For business struggling with the pandemic, there was some positive news as the rates multiplier will be frozen for the 2021-22 financial year.

Responding to the announcements, Huw Edwards, CEO of ukactive, highlighted the role the physical activity sector can play in the UK's economic recovery.

“Today’s Spending Review offers opportunities for our sector to support the transformation of communities and especially to shape the future of the high street, through the UK Shared Prosperity Fund and the Levelling Up Fund," Edwards said.

“Our challenging economic forecast requires the Chancellor to look for the greatest return on investment for the funding decisions he makes.

“In this respect, the fitness and leisure sector provides a unique proposition, given that it can drive both economic and health benefits, avoiding any trade-off between the two.

“The latest evidence from Sport England and Sheffield Hallam University shows a return of £4 for every £1 spent on community sport and physical activity.

“We want to work with the Government on a plan to put sport and physical activity at the heart of the nation’s renewal.

“We would like to see a tailored support package for the sector that not only includes funding, but also stimulus to encourage growth in 2021 – a combination of business rate relief, VAT exemptions, and incentives that drive more people back into activity.

“This moment represents a real opportunity to invest in a sector that can provide a major return on investment for our nation’s economic, social, mental and physical health,” said Edwards.
PRODUCT NEWS
Inspace Fitness launches new brand and online channels
Fitness start-up, Inspace, has revealed plans to launch a new brand, website and social channels.
ASPA International launches handheld UV-C light disinfection lamp
For over 30 years, ASPA International has designed and built high-quality spas for the hotel, health and wellness sectors.
The Retention People unveil 2020 Member Experience Awards winners
Member engagement software provider The Retention People (TRP) has unveiled the winners of its annual 2020 Member Experience Awards (MEA).
Forget the ‘Netflix effect’ – it’s all about the ‘iFit effect’ to boost member retention
Addiction – a word laden with negativity. But isn’t that exactly what the fitness industry wants? For members to be addicted (in a healthy way) to exercise – not just to increase profits but, most importantly, so they can live happier, healthier and longer lives.
Pulse Fitness updates iGym London with state-of-the-art technology
Pulse Fitness has recently completed a refurbishment of the fitness facilities at iGym London.
Storytelling - the future of fitness content
Heading into 2021, storytelling will be a key trend among fitness content creators and connected fitness providers, as the industry recognises its potential to unlock ultra- engaging experiences that boost retention.
What does a socially distanced leisure centre and health club look like?
The world has had to get used to social distancing in 2020 and any business operating in the leisure and hospitality sectors has had to face this challenge more than most.
AskNicely helps empower businesses to improve customer experience and boost NPS
Maintaining a consistent member experience across a growing health and fitness brand can prove challenging.
Ariston’s range of water heaters can reduce running costs for gyms
Ariston’s electric water heaters create hot water cost-effectively, ensuring gym-goers can enjoy a post-workout shower, due to fast reheat times and large storage capacities.
A runner’s life, by Dame Kelly Holmes
I started running when I was 12 years old, a skinny girl with an afro. I knew I loved running, I felt free and seemed to glide easily rather than pound the pavements.
Uscreen announces first to market Apple Watch Fitness Tracker
At Uscreen, we pride ourselves on being proactive innovators in the industry. We're continually doing our research and predicting where the industry is going so we can ensure the state-of-the-art technology to back you up in your video business.
Xn Leisure’s five-step process to increasing member retention
While leisure operators can generate interest and build an audience fairly easily, the challenge is converting an audience into a paying, engaged community – and keeping them there.
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Xn continue to work with customers and the sector to understand and deliver technology to enhance [more...]
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ADVERTISE . CONTACT US

Leisure Media, Portmill House, Portmill Lane,
Hitchin, Hertfordshire SG5 1DJ Tel: +44 (0)1462 431385

©Cybertrek 2021

ABOUT LEISURE MEDIA
LEISURE MEDIA MAGAZINES
LEISURE MEDIA HANDBOOKS
LEISURE MEDIA WEBSITES
LEISURE MEDIA PRODUCT SEARCH
PRINT SUBSCRIPTIONS
FREE DIGITAL SUBSCRIPTIONS