Adventure awaits this half term!

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October half term is right around the corner! We know it can be tough to keep the kids entertained which is why we have set up a bonanza of activities and events for grandparents, parents and kids to enjoy.

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Children’s Holiday Club – Andover Leisure Centre

IMG_0681This October’s sessions are all Halloween themed with activities that include making paper mache pumpkins, making and decorating witches and wizard hats and much more!

Each morning will consist of Merlin’s Free Play, Swimming, a snack provided and cool down activities in the squash court after lunch.

View the full timetable and book online today here.

Explore Outdoor – Charlton Lakeside Pavilion

Marsh FireKeep your modern day Mowgli’s entertained this October with Explore Outdoor!

Enrol your child on an Explore Outdoor Adventure Day, with action packed fun activities for children aged 8-14 years at Charlton Lakeside Pavilion.

Our October timetable is as follows:

Monday 26th October 2015 – Climbing and Orienteering

Wednesday 28th October 2015 – Kayaking and Archery

Thursday 29th October 2015 – Bush Craft and Raft Building

Sessions run from 9am – 5pm. Drop off and collection at Andover Leisure Centre.

Book a space online today!

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Andover Roller Disco – 30th October

IMG_0974Lace up those skates, don your best fancy dress and get your groove on at our Halloween Roller Disco!

Time: 3.30pm – 5.30pm

Tickets only available on the day.

Romsey Pool Disco – Friday 30th October

yellow3Make it a Halloween to remember by taking a dip in our slime green dyed swimming pool. Bring the whole family together and enjoy all the features that the rapids pool has to offer, including a tipping bucket, flume and pirate ship.

There are two sessions available: 6pm is suitable for families and 8pm when everyone is welcome

Tickets are £3.20 and are available from reception. Book in advance to avoid disappointment by phoning 01794 830333.

Knightwood Halloween Party – Saturday 31st October

halloween 2012 086Book your child (maximum 8 years old) a space at our Halloween Party at Knightwood Leisure Centre. Activities include the bouncy castle, music, spooky activities and more!

We have two party sessions available at: 2.30pm – 3.30pm and 4pm – 5pm

Spaces to the party cost £4.50 per child (under 1’s go free) and tickets come with a free Halloween slush! Book a space today by calling Knightwood Leisure Centre on 02380 276254.

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Crazy Golf at Romsey and Charlton

IMG_8749Put your putting skills to the test on our 18 hole crazy golf courses at Charlton Lakeside Pavilion and Romsey Rapids Sports Complex. This activity provides entertainment for young and old(er) alike!

Come and try it:

Charlton Lakeside Pavilion: Adults £2.45, children £1.60, adult concessions £2.20. (£5 club hire deposit)

Romsey Rapids Sports Complex: Clubs are available from rapids reception between 7.40am – 9.30pm (Monday – Friday) and between 7.40am – 7pm (Saturday & Sunday)

Fast Track – Romsey Rapids Sports Complex

fLUMEBeat the queues and make this half term a hassle free one by booking Fast Track swimming at Romsey Rapids Sports Complex – only available online.

Swimming is a great physical activity for all the family. The Romsey Rapids Sports Complex leisure pool is full of action – take a pirate wash under the tipping bucket, climb up to the crows nest and whiz down the long slide.

There’s also a pirate ship and slide just for the little ones in our toddler pool area.

What are you waiting for, book your tickets here.

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New UK Record set in Andover

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Hooray! We’re record breakers! With the help of over 300 people from all corners of Hampshire came together at Andover Leisure Centre to set a new record for the largest seated exercise class in the UK.

As well as setting a brand new UK record, the attempt was made to help raise awareness of exercise for older people on International Day of the Older Person.

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Seated exercises help older people, and other people who are frail, build strength and improve mobility. The classes, held at the leisure centre, are also a great way for older people to socialise as well as get moving.

“I couldn’t walk 300 yards but with the classes help and the exercises I saw improvements each time I went. That was five years ago and I still go now. I really enjoyed the day and it was great to see so many of us all together, the camaraderie between us all was one of the best parts!” – Gordon Page, 84, Andover.

Representatives from Public Health England, NHS England and The Mayor of Test Valley, councillor Iris Andersen all attended the event adding their backing to the importance of remaining active as we age.

Sports students and health and social care students from Andover College helped marshal the event as well as handing out the all important tea and cakes afterwards.

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One of the organisers, Adi Phillips, Falls Prevention Co-ordinator with Southern Health NHS Foundation Trust said:

“We wanted people, old and young, to understand that just because you age doesn’t mean you should stop being active.

“Physical activity is essential in older age to help reduce frailty, prevent falls and increase mobility and independence. Active people are more likely to have better moods, be less anxious, have better memory, sleep better and have more social contacts.”

Liz Murray, Community Development Manager with Valley Leisure, who also helped organise the record breaking event, said:

“Valley Leisure is really proud of all the Steady and Strong classes that we run for older people of all abilities which is why we were so keen to be involved in the record attempt.

“Seeing so many people come together to raise awareness was inspiring and hopefully it will inspire more people to get involved and join their local Steady and Strong class.”

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For more information about the Steady and Strong classes call Andover Leisure Centre on 01264 347100, or pop into the centre and ask for Laura Thomson.

Time is running out to nominate for the Andover & District Sports Awards

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The Andover and District Sports Awards are BACK and open for nominations! The closing date to get nominations in is Friday 9th October, so there isn’t long left to fill out your forms.

The Sports Awards recognise the achievements and dedication of local sports people from Andover and the surrounding villages. The awards haven’t been held in Andover since 2013 with last years ceremony celebrating the sporting achievements of those in Romsey.

“We had a fantastic evening at last year’s event celebrating the great sporting achievements of people in the south and I’m very much looking forward to meeting and hearing the stories from all this year’s winners.”   – Kevin Paterson, chief executive for Valley Leisure

The 12 awards categories are:

  • Junior Team of the Year
  • Junior Sportsperson of the Year
  • Junior Disability Sportsperson of the Year
  • School Team of the Year
  • Team of the Year
  • Disability Sportsperson of the Year
  • Sportsperson of the Year
  • Veteran Sportsperson of the Year
  • Coach of the Year
  • Volunteer of the Year
  • Lifetime Contribution Award
  • Outstanding Personal Achievement.

Nominations can be made on the Valley Leisure and The Breeze Andover websites.

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The winners will be announced on Saturday 14th November at a night of celebration at Andover Leisure Centre, sponsored by Andover Patio Centre, Simply Health, Control Techniques Dynamics, JB Motors, JPD Property Services and The Breeze Andover.

Demfest 2015

Blue skies and picturesque gardens set the perfect scene for the first ever Demfest 2015 event, held at Sir Harold Hillier Gardens in Romsey.

The day was filled with inspiration, innovation and education, aimed at increasing the Dementia Friendly Community in Hampshire.

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So what is Dementia?

Dementia is a syndrome associated with an ongoing decline of the brain and its abilities. Your risk of developing dementia increases as you get older, and the condition usually occurs in people over the age of 65.

Common symptoms include:
• memory loss
• thinking speed
• mental agility
• language
• understanding
• judgement

How do we want to help?

Valley Leisure, as a member of the Hampshire Dementia Alliance, is working towards expanding the reach of our services for those living with or caring for someone with Dementia, as well as improving the experience of services for those with Dementia and their carers.

Liz Murray, Community Development Manager at Valley Leisure said: It was fantastic to be part of this event as it brought our community work to life. It was clear that we, as an organisation, have a clear role to play in supporting carers with their health and wellbeing in order for them to support the ones they care for.

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As part of the event, Valley Leisure gave away a 6 month membership for the Toning Centre at Romsey Rapids Sports Complex.

The Toning Centre is a lighter alternative to the gym, designed to help improve fitness and mobility through power assisted equipment. The machinery moves with the user, allowing them to place their desired amount of pressure and effort into the exercise.

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To find out more or to book a free trial at the Toning Centre, please visit our website HERE or alternatively call 01794 835 568.

Dementia help and support are available

If you or a loved one has been diagnosed with dementia, you are not alone. Dementia UK offers an Admiral Nursing DIRECT, a national dementia specialist helpline and email service, provided by experienced Admiral Nurses and is for family and professional carers, people with dementia and those worried about their memory.

Call the helpline on 0845 257 9406 or email direct@dementiauk.org

 

UK and Worldwide events

We’ve held many events over the past 25 years across our Test Valley sites, but in recent years the town has attracted more worldly events. Here we take a look at the few that we have held since 2013 – we look forward to hosting even bigger events in the future!

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In October 2013, Andover Leisure Centre played host to the World Ju-Jitsu Championships. The championships were previously held in Las Vegas and the 2013 event was the first time Andover had held a World Championships of any kind. Local man Tommy Gentleman fended off competitors from Australia and America to walk away with the world title. It was a brilliant event for Andover, and a joy for it to be held at the centre.

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In March 2014, the UK’s hardest man – Alexei ‘BOOM’ Roberts had to defend his ITC Lightweight Championship against Xavier Sadras at a Cage Fighting event held at none other than Andover Leisure Centre. With an all-action MMA (Mixed Martial Arts) card and 20 fights lined up, the show was welcomed sporting entertainment to the town.

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April 2015 saw Andover Leisure Centre get the stamp of approval as it hosted a stamp show. More than 1,000 people from across the UK came to the event (some from as far as Scotland) and a total of 72 exhibitors brought their collections for display and trade. The show proved good for the centre and the town as Andover saw a boost in visitor numbers over the weekend.

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June 2015 saw Andover once again play host to a worldly event. The BPU British Powerlifting Championships saw lifters from across the country raising the bar in their bid to qualify for the World Championships set to be held in Portugal later in the year. As well as breaking British records, three current Valley Leisure members qualified for the world championships. Read our members stories HERE.

Celebrate 25 years of Valley Leisure with us – claim a FREE 7 day membership HERE.

Celebrating 25 years of Valley Leisure

Its our birthday, and celebrating 25 years of Valley Leisure gives us the perfect chance to reflect on just how far we’ve come in our quest to get ‘more people, more active.’

Its quite overwhelming to see just how much has happened over the years. From events to new buildings to customer stories, this summer we take a look back on the incredible stories and people who have passed through our doors.

So what’s happened? The answer? A LOT!

The pool, Andover Leisure Centre

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Romsey Rapids Sports Complex, Romsey

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Teen Fitness

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In the past year we have…

  • Achieved over 1million visits across our 5 centres
  • Invested over 500k into our services – this included installing a state of the art gym at Andover Leisure Centre
  • Worked with 62 local educational groups
  • Launched a toning facility at Romsey Rapids Sports Complex offering specialised exercise programmes with specialist equipment.
  • Reduced our carbon emission by 331,000kg
  • And much, much more!!!!!

Rewards for our valued customers, old and new

As you know, our mission is to get ‘more people, more active’, that’s why we are inviting members to try something new this summer.

We are offering a FREE fully inclusive 7 day membership pass from now to 31st August. Those who join in July or August will also receive a fully inclusive membership for this discounted price of £25 over the summer (plus no joining fee!) Enquire here.

Our existing members can take advantage of some great offers this summer too. Attend an activity day in July or August to get the next month of your membership for only £25. Lump sum members can get a whole month free!

A little bit about who we are

Valley Leisure is a social enterprise guided by Trustees (who between them have over 150 years of business experience!) who provide their time for and expertise for free. We operate as a commercial charity, delivering social outcomes with any surpluses fully reinvested into our facilities and services.

Our commitment to service and continuous improvement has been graded as Excellent by Quest, the industry benchmarking specialists recognised by Sport England. This grading places us within the top 10% of leisure operators nationally.

Fitness Expo 2015: An overview!

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That’s it! Another Fitness Expo done and dusted for another year, and 2015 was host to one of our greatest yet. This year’s Valley Leisure Fitness Expo gave members the chance to show off all that they have achieved over the past few weeks, months and years.

The afternoon kicked off with the power lifting competitions. The amount of skill and strength that our members showed was incredible, and although he did not win the competition, Clifford Richards, 36 from Andover sent the room into silence when he attempted to beat his personal weight lifting goals. The competition was tough and all involved did themselves proud with many beating their own personal goals, but the overall powerlifting winner was the incredibly impressive Phil Nosko.

IMG_1148Also happening throughout the day was the fitness challenge which saw months of training in practice as our members took on the ‘Spartan 300’ challenge. Coming in a series of levels, this timed challenge involves an series of reps on different pieces of functional equipment including deadlifts, box jumps and pull-ups. Our Spartans really gave this challenge their best and all were worthy of their certificates – well done to all!

IMG_1082 IMG_1123 IMG_1126 After the power lifting and fitness challenge awards presentation, the whole gym was geared up in anticipation for the bodybuilding show. With a room full of family and friends, the competitors were welcomed to a sea of applause which definitely calmed the nerves (especially for those who had not done anything like this before). The show was made up of four groups of three, the over 40’s, the juniors, the women’s and the physique section. Our members had to come out in their groups and perform a series of moves that show off different areas of the body; the judges then compared them to each other to help determine who their winners could be. Each of our bodybuilders also performed individually to music of their choice to further display what they had achieved, and although every single one of them did brilliantly, the judges had to pick their winners. And here they are:

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Clockwise: 1st Place Women’s – Sofia Latta, 1st Place Physique – Petr Dusbabek, 1st Place Juniors and overall winner – Jake Lemon, 1st Place Over 40’s – Chris Yates.

This year’s expo was incredibly impressive and everyone that took part or helped out on the day should be very proud of themselves. The amount of talent that walked through on Saturday was staggering and it really went to show just how much you can achieve if you put your mind to it. Until next year…!

To everyone that took part, if you would like a full set of your own images that were taken during the event, please email efenton@valleyleisure.com.