Natalie Smith, Pioneer Community Health Studio, said: “[Leisure provision in Bacup] is important to encourage people to get moving. As we are in a very low socio-economic area, local residents are not aware that they have such great facilities in the area and that Pioneer’s here for the community.” Pioneer was founded in May 2000 by Gavin Smith, with their first location being at the Pioneer Building in Bacup Centre before moving onto Riverside, Newchurch Road. After several flooding incidents at this site, Pioneer moved into their current facility on Park Road in 2016 which homes an Olympic conditioning area, functional training zone and a three-lane running track.
The partnership will provide a greater variety of fitness and activities to the 700 members, aged 4 to a pensioner, including access to the pool at Marl Pits and discounted prices at the Adrenaline Centre’s Grip & Go climbing facility. Alongside the benefits that will be available to members, it will also offer great help to staff: “When its just us, we haven’t got the number of people to advertise and spread the word as far.”
Rossendale Leisure Trust Chief Executive, Ken Masser said: “The East part of Rossendale is just as vital to the success of Rossendale Leisure Trust…This will open a wider choice of leisure provision and opportunities for people living in Bacup.” The venture will spread health, fun and happiness further throughout the borough where it is estimated that 51% of adults take part in no physical activity per month. Offering a wider range of activities to members of Rossendale Leisure Trust and expanding these into Bacup, this high rate of inactivity will hopefully be tackled, improving the overall health of the Valley residents. Natalie Smith added: “The only things that will change are things for the better.”