Badminton players in courts storm at leisure centre

Over 50s badminton goup protestors at Clayton Green Sports Centre
Over 50s badminton goup protestors at Clayton Green Sports Centre
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Angry members of an over-50s badminton club have slammed leisure bosses for taking their courts away.

The club, which plays at Clayton Green Leisure Centre, says it is not just the badminton that will be hit – but the social get together each week, too.

Members – there are currently 30 – have played at the leisure centre every Wednesday, from 10am to noon, for the last seven years.

They claim that without any consultation, their courts have been reduced from six to three to accommodate Chorley Gymnastics Club.

The leisure facility is managed by Active Nation on behalf of Chorley Council.

Player David Knott, of Astley Village, said: “We still need six courts on a Wednesday for the amount of people that go, like we’ve had for the last seven years. They’re splitting us over two day, Wednesday 10am to 12, Friday, 12 to 2pm supervised and an hour after that unsupervised.”

Ellen Ormerod, of Penwortham, added: “It’s a social thing as well.”

The badminton players come from the Leyland, Chorley and Penwortham areas.

Councillor Bev Murray, who has responsibility for community development at Chorley Council, said: “The council has been liaising with the management team at Active Nation to look at increasing usage of the sports facilities and how all groups and clubs can be accommodated at Clayton Green Sports Centre. There should have been some discussions a number of weeks ago with the badminton group and we have raised this with Active Nation who have apologised that this did not happen. The badminton sessions are organised and run by Active Nation who always try to accommodate the needs of a variety of groups and clubs at our sport and leisure centres. The badminton group has been offered permanent use of half of the sports hall, which the council have been assured, would not stop or remove any sessions. Discussions are ongoing.”