August 27 2014 Latest news:

Local Weather

Partly Cloudy

Partly Cloudy

max temp: 20°C

min temp: 17°C

Five-day forecast

Town hall members are being urged to show “some balls” over a controversial leisure contract tonight.

To send a link to this page to a friend, you must be logged in.

Last week Islington Council awarded the multi-million pound contract to run the borough’s leisure centres for the next 15 years to Greenwich company GLL.

The decision, which was leaked prior to the official announcement, has attracted criticism from union UNISON, as well as Holloway-based charity Aquaterra, which has held the contract since 1997 – it says the process lacked transparency.

Now the decision has been ‘called in’ by the opposition Lib Dem group which want the council to re-think the decision and answer the following questions:

- What will happen to the 50 people currently working in Aquaterra’s Holloway head office?

- What will happen to the 105 freelance gym instructors employed in Islington’s leisure centres?

- Do GLL pay the London Living Wage across the whole of the company?

A scrutiny committee will discuss the case tonight, and if they uphold the call-in, the council’s ruling executive may have to think again.

Cllr John Gilbert, a Lib Dem member of the committee, said: “It all depends on whether the Labour members have the balls to stand up to the executive.

“There is a lot of interest in the meeting, particularly from the gym instructors who are freelance

“Quite a few of them will them will turn up to have their say and ask the council to rethink the whole thing.

“People hadn’t considered what would happen to them – and I think they have very strong grounds.

“I am hopeful they will think again.”

Antony Kildare, chief executive at Aquaterra, said: “We are awaiting the release of Islington Council’s full report on the preferred leisure provider.

“We hope the meeting tonight will shed further light on the scores and detail.”

A spokesman for the council said Aquaterra employees who are members of the team delivering to the current leisure contract will have the right to transfer to the new provider.

He added that GLL will pay the living wage in Islington.

Share this article


   Local advertisers

More News articles

Click here to read the Digital Edition of the Islington Gazette on screen
Use our Wedding site to help you plan your big day!
At WeddingSite we know how much you have to organise for your wedding day, that's why we have designed a set of FREE, simple-to-use tools to make the planning process easy & hassle-free. FIND OUT MORE
Find a date using our online dating and friend finder
You can meet new friends, find romance or simply meet up online with people sharing similar interests and hobbies. FIND OUT MORE
Find a local business using our online directory search
Need a plumber? Or a florist? Or anything else? Search our business directory to find Islington businesses in just a few seconds. FIND OUT MORE
Family notices from the Islington Gazette, with readers' tributes
In memoriam, birthdays, weddings, anniversaries, best wishes & special days. FIND OUT MORE

Celebrity / Showbiz See all

Drake has cancelled his Wireless London performance (Photo by Theo Wargo/Getty Images for ESPN)

Fans devastated after Drake cancels Wireless London festival

Rapper Drake has pulled out of his headline appearances at this weekend’s Wireless Festival in London, leaving fans devastated.

Read full story »