The Sport, Leisure and Culture Consultancy (SLC) is delighted to announce that de Stafford School in Caterham has agreed a new 15-year partnership with Freedom Leisure to manage and develop the School’s dual-use sports centre. SLC was appointed by de Stafford School to support the School throughout the procurement process and are proud to have helped secure a sustainable future for this important school and community sports facility.

The dual-use site includes a gym, 25m swimming pool, fitness studio and sports hall and serves both the School in delivering the P.E curriculum and the local community in providing opportunities for people to be active. As part of the new contract, Freedom Leisure intend to invest £1.2m to help improve and modernise the centre. Improvements include extending the gym and upgrading the equipment, adding a second group exercise studio to accommodate an extended class timetable, improving the catering offer, upgrading IT systems and installing new energy efficiency plant. This will reduce the centre’s carbon footprint.

In addition, Freedom Leisure will work closely with the School to explore the development of a new 3G artificial turf pitch which will be utilised by the School during the day be available for community use in the evenings and at weekends.

The service has been redesigned to focus on a clear set of outcomes for the School and local community and will be based upon a strong partnership philosophy and shared vision of more active pupils, staff and local people. In addition to providing improved facilities and wider programming, the School has also secured savings of c. £1.7M over the term of the contract. This includes transferring full risk on building maintenance and lifecycle replacement to Freedom Leisure.

Toby Kingsbury, Managing Consultant and project lead for SLC said, “This result is great news for the staff, governors and pupils at de Stafford School and for the many local people who use the sports centre. The new contract will provide the School with a valuable new revenue stream and has secured a sustainable future for the sports centre. It just goes to show that schools can optimise their sports facilities through effective procurement without having to compromise on access arrangements or service levels.”

Jeremy Garner, Head Teacher at de Stafford School said, “We are delighted to enter into a partnership with Freedom Leisure as they are widely recognised as one of the top leisure trusts in the UK. Their investment in the facility and genuine commitment to providing affordable and accessible sport and leisure opportunities will impact on the health and well-being of the local community as well as the pupils and staff here at de Stafford school. The ongoing support, advice and guidance we received from SLC throughout the procurement process was excellent and integral to securing such a positive outcome for the school.

For more information about this procurement or if you would like to discuss your own project, please contact us: or 01444 459927.