(Photo above – Walk-a-Mile with a Smile at Kingfisher Leisure Centre)

Abbeycroft Leisure launched their summer Festival of Fun today (28 July) at Kingfisher Leisure Centre.

Suffolk’s largest, independent leisure provider and not-for-profit social enterprise are running a programme of completely FREE open days throughout the summer across six of their centres.

The aim of the open days is to encourage more people to experience just how safe it is to use gyms, pools and leisure centres now they have fully reopened, as well as motivate families to lead more active, healthy lifestyles.

The open days include a schedule of free taster sessions, fitness classes, soft-play with meet and greet characters, dance and sing-a-long sessions, wet-n-wild swimming and much more.

The festival is part of their summer offer, which also includes free swimming and lunch for children ages 11-16 who are in receipt of free school meals, which is funded by Suffolk County Council’s Summer Activity Programme.

They also have an extensive Explore Outdoor programme this summer with both paid-for and FREE activity days plus free family park cooking, again for children who are in receipt of free school meals.

Warren Smyth, chief executive at Abbeycroft said:
“We’ve been really pleased with the appetite from the community to get back to our leisure centres but we cannot be complacent and we must do more to encourage people to lead active lifestyles.”

“Our programme this summer is a perfect opportunity for the many families choosing staycations to come and try something new or something they haven’t done for a while.”

“And I’m particularly proud of the FREE activities we’ve been able to offer with the help of our funding partners, both with the Explore Outdoor team and the free swimming across all of our pools.”

Amie from Brandon, a customer on the family park cooking programme said:
“I can’t thank Abbeycroft enough. We attended the family cooking day at Brandon. My children and I had an amazing day and really enjoyed ourselves. Steve the instructor was so welcoming and good with the children. We were also overwhelmed with the food parcel we took home and will definitely be making all the recipes.”

Laura from Sudbury who attended the first Festival of Fun day at Kingfisher said:
“Thank you so much for putting this event on today. It’s difficult finding lots to do during the holidays but the children have had so much fun. This has been great today. We’re so happy the soft-play area is open again and the kids can safely run around and burn off energy.”

Lylie from Sudbury said:
“I’ve only just joined as a member to do some swimming and the fitness classes and primarily I joined for my mental health. It’s great that the classes actually improve my physical health too and I feel fitter and more energised but for me, the mental health benefits are far more important than body image.”

“So when we saw there was an open day on today, we wanted to bring our little girl, Nellie, and she’s had a great time on the soft play so we will definitely be bringing her back.”

Stephanie and Tony Lee from Sudbury said:
“We loved the Walk-a-Mile with a smile at lunchtime. We brought our grandchildren who had never done it before and we all had a thoroughly enjoyable time and will definitely walk further next time. We’re going swimming too, so it’s a real treat.”

To find out more about the other Festival of Fun open days and summer activities visit https://www.abbeycroft.org.uk/festivaloffun/

Remaining open day dates:

Newmarket Leisure Centre – 4 August
Haverhill Leisure Centre – 12 August
Bury Leisure Centre – 17 August
Mildenhall Hub – 18 August
Hadleigh Pool and Leisure – 18 September

Lylie and Nellie
Lylie and Nellie
Stephanie and Tony Lee
Stephanie and Tony lee
Hannah Collier and Laura Graham