A Northampton school's partnership will enable community groups to make use of its sports and performing arts facilities on evenings, weekends and during school holidays.
Thomas Becket Catholic School has joined forces with School Lettings Solutions (SLS) to manage its facilities and provide leisure venues for various activities, such as fitness classes, dance workshops and craft groups.
SLS partners with schools, academies and colleges to fully manage their facilities at zero cost to the organisations, while linking them with local community groups in need of affordable space.
Louise Oke, finance manager at Thomas Becket Catholic School, said: “We’re really excited to be opening up the school to the wider community. We’re proud of the facilities we offer our students, such as our dance studio and 3G pitch, and it makes sense to us that they are available to use during evenings and weekends as well.
“We’ve already got some great partners signed up to use our facilities, such as the Parklands Tigers, and we’re looking forward to getting more on board. This can only be a positive thing for our students and people in the area.”
The school will play host to activities, such as pilates and football. Community groups and organisations can hire its facilities, which include a 3G pitch, sports hall, dance studio and a gymnasium.
It is hoped the partnership will open up new opportunities to the school’s students, as well as people of all ages from the local area.
SLS currently works with more than 160 schools nationwide, helping them to make the best use of their facilities. It provides a fully managed service, including managing bookings and staffing the facilities to ensure rooms are secure and ready for the next school day.
The business is expanding across the country and is looking to sign up schools in the East Midlands, which are currently facing hundreds of thousands of pounds of funding cuts.
Jackie Latu, managing director of SLS, said: “It’s great to welcome Thomas Becket Catholic School as our latest partner. The school has got some brilliant facilities and we’ve already had lots of booking enquiries.
"We’re passionate about ensuring people have access to opportunities that boost their health and wellbeing, so we’re keen to provide local groups with marketing support to make sure their clubs thrive and are well attended.
“There is huge potential to provide more places like this for people of all ages to come together, which will be really positive for the area. At the same time, our partnerships provide a new stream of income for schools as their budgets come under more and more pressure.”