Leisure set for new direction

Published on 06 December 2017


Northern Grampians Shire Council will become the major provider of leisure services at the Stawell Leisure Complex following a complete review of leisure services currently offered by Council.

As part of its service review process, which will examine the effectiveness and efficiency of all 42 of Council’s services in an effort to create a more financially sustainable future for the Northern Grampians Shire, a range of recommendations and options were presented at Monday evening’s Council meeting, with Councillors opting for Council to become the provider of a full health and wellness facility including gym and fitness services at the Stawell Leisure Complex, in addition to operating and offering the existing aquatic program.

Northern Grampians Shire Council Mayor, Cr Tony Driscoll, said the choice for Council to become the major provider of gym and fitness services was the best outcome for the entire community.

“A range of options were presented to us as a part of the service review process, and Council felt that this particular option was the correct choice for the entire community, both in terms of community’s needs and financial viability,” Cr Driscoll said.

“Council felt that several other options presented to it as part of the service review process - including the complete closure of the SLC facility or operating the facility purely as a swimming pool - were simply not acceptable, and that this option best suited the needs of our community.

“We know that health and fitness are key to the ongoing livability of our shire, and we are pleased to be able to continue to offer gym and fitness services to the community.”

Under the newly-adopted recommendation, Council will transition to the new operating model with the first step being liaison with the current providers, with a restructuring of the team resulting in an overall cost saving to Council.

Other factors which form part of the leisure recommendation are:

  • Reviewing organisational structure to reflect staffing needs to run the gym service.

  • Finalising business planning for SLC as an entire complex.

  • Providing monthly updates to Council through Briefings during transition and business development stage.

  • Developing engagement and marketing strategies to attract and retain members and users.

  • Reconsidering opening hours with a reduction in winter operating hours.