JUBILEE PARK DEVELOPMENT PLAN Update May 2019
Funding update: Jubilee Park Woodhall Spa ltd (JPWS) are getting very close to securing the £650,000 – £700,000 needed to deliver the refurbishment and update of the current pool building, to include the provision of a health and fitness suite.
The funding is being provided through grants, our own funds and a loan. Woodhall Spa Parish Council has been approached to support our loan requirements and is keen to help.
The Parish Council is looking to support the project by raising the rest of the money through the Public Works Loan Board and is asking the opinion of residents in a questionnaire to be delivered shortly.
If you’re not sure what it’s all about there are 3 chances coming up to find out more-
- The Parish Council’s AGM on Thursday 23rd May at 6.30pm at the National Golf Centre, we’ll be there with details
- If you’re a member, our own AGM on Wednesday 29th May at 7pm at the Petwood Hotel-
- An open community meeting on 30th May at 6.30pm also at Petwood
Jubilee Park Background
- In 2014 Jubilee Park employed 3 people all year, it now employs 23 and up to 47 during the season, making it a major local employer
- Visitors to the park bring in much needed extra revenue to local businesses, which keeps them viable. An independently compiled county formula for measuring visitor impact was used to calculate that in 2018, a record year, the swimming pool alone will have resulted in an extra £700,000 spent locally. Other park activities, not least the 40s weekend when the park is the hub of this major event, will have contributed even more.
- The park is increasingly important in improving the health, fitness and wellbeing of the local community, which suffers from a high incidence of long term conditions such as type 2 diabetes. JPWS already works with local GP practices on ‘social subscriptions’ which use exercise as part of a patient’s treatment. New health and fitness facilities will enable this part of the park’s mission to significantly expand.
- The park is extremely important to Woodhall Spa’s identity and is widely supported by all sections of the local community.
JUBILEE PARK WOODHALL SPA LTD (JPWS)
- A registered charity
- Run by its members who have appointed 11 volunteer trustees with a wide range of experience across the business, financial, marketing, educational, local government and health sectors
- Approx. 400 adult members and 600 junior members
- Supported by many dedicated volunteers
- No public funding since 2016
- The current pool buildings are more than 20 years past their expected replacement date and increasingly tired and expensive to maintain. The 2 stage project will improve and replace them.
- Stage 1 – improve and reconfigure the changing facilities in the same footprint & add poolside lido-style cubicles and a 27 station health & fitness suite open all year
- Stage 2 – add an extension housing a multi-purpose studio for health-related use & private hire. This may be able to incorporate updated public conveniences to replace the current tired facilities and free up some additional space for more
- Access will be made as all-inclusive as possible, ranging from an annual monthly membership to day tickets. It is intended to appeal to people of all ages and all levels of fitness.
WHY ADD THESE FACILITIES?
- Health & Fitness is a fast growing industry. JPWS have researched the local need and based their business plan on the lowest estimation of demand.
- The plan shows that income from the fitness facilities will keep the whole park financially viable in the long term, securing its future
- Having all year round opening gives the potential for extending the swimming pool season further – perhaps all year round.
- Each year the project is delayed, the cost rises. It is already £200,000 more than estimated in 2014.
HOW WILL IT BE PAID FOR?
- Over the past four years JPWS, through contract renegotiation and diligent and prudent management, has secured circa £140,000 in reserves, which will provide some of the funding required for the refurbishment and offers security for unforeseen events.
- Grants to cover part of the cost have been applied for, Sport England have already offered £120,000 towards the project and LEADER (the rural development fund) will confirm whether the £160,000 we applied for will be granted or not within weeks.
- The rest of the necessary finance will be borrowed and JPWS has consulted widely with potential sources.
- These include ELDC, The Parish Council, commercial banks and the Charity Bank. The Parish Council is offering the best solution.
- The business plan shows that repayments can be achieved from income and still allow a surplus – it had been stress tested and can still work if interest rates rise up to 15% and membership is as low as 365, though research shows it is likely to be over 500 from the start.
WHAT IS THE REACTION TO THE PLANS SO FAR?
- A recent survey of local people received 1,494 responses and clearly supported the need for improvements to be made with 98% of respondents agreeing that the facility would benefit the health of the local population and bring more people into Jubilee Park and Woodhall Spa.
- More than 750 indicated that they would definitely want to join the fitness suite as members with a further 550 indicating they might.
- The survey further showed that people feel the facility would be equally beneficial and appeal to people of all ages from teens to the retired.
WHAT IS THE RISK?
- With every project there are risks – taking over the operation of Jubilee Park in 2014 after ELDC had been unable to make it financially viable was a risk. Stepping in to prevent the park’s closure, JPWS has demonstrated that it has the skills and vision to run the facility effectively and has received national attention for its success.
- The biggest risk to Jubilee Park today is doing nothing.
WHEN WOULD THE PROJECT START?
- If all the funding streams come together, JPWS hope to begin as soon at the pools close in September.