Kelvin Hall and the Palace of Art will benefit from a £1.4 million investment to improve sport and physical activity facilities within Glasgow as part of a wider effort to get more people active across the city. The funding package will add new indoor climbing walls and increase capacity for gymnastics, broadening the appeal of the sport and physical activity offered by the Glasgow Club – Scotland’s largest health and fitness network.
In response to customer demand, work is also progressing to extend opening hours at a number of Glasgow Club centres with further details set to be announced in due course. Membership and pricing structures will also be simplified, with new rates for both adults and junior members, while discounts and free activities will be targeted to provide support for families and individuals most in need.
Councillor David McDonald, the Chair of Glasgow Life and Depute Leader of Glasgow City Council, said: “Communities across Glasgow have access to world-class sport and leisure facilities and we are working hard to ensure that everyone has the chance to be more fit and active. We’re investing to further improve our facilities at Kelvin Hall and the Palace of Art and we will be open for longer at some of our most popular facilities to meet customer demand.”
The Glasgow Club has 25 facilities across the city, including world-class facilities such as the Emirates Arena, the Tollcross International Swimming Centre and recently refurbished venues such as Glasgow Club Gorbals. Attendances last year topped 6.3 million, with a record 42,000 Glasgow Club members - up from 20,000 in 2009.
Work will begin soon on expanding the fitness offer at Kelvin Hall, by creating an indoor climbing centre alongside children’s soft play within an unused space toward the front of the iconic building. Glasgow Club Kelvin Hall opened as part of a £35 Million refurbishment in 2016 as part of a shared campus with the University of Glasgow and the National Library of Scotland. The Palace of Art, located on the edge of Bellahouston Park, will be repurposed as a centre of excellence for gymnastics, following the success of the Gymnastics Academy at Kelvin Hall. It is hoped that work on both centres will be completed before the end of the year.
Billy Garrett, Director of Sport and Events at Glasgow Life, said: “We’re constantly working to improve our sports facilities – and access to them – for the people of Glasgow. While participation rates are increasing, and membership of the Glasgow Club is at record levels, we realise we need to do more to support those most in need. Our new pricing and membership structure will target discounts and free activities at those who can least afford to participate. We have a duty to ensure that any public subsidy is spent where it is most needed if we are to achieve our goal of helping more people to get more active and in better health.”
Details of developments and improvements will be made available through the Glasgow Club website, app and direct communication with members.