There was shock news at the Meres Leisure Centre when I arrived when Sue Harris, a high-valued and well-respected instructor of many conditioning and toning classes, champion of those with additional needs and the Journal’s Local Hero of 2012 announced she had resigned from her post.
All those who have encountered Sue know how hard she strives to give all she can in the pursuit of enjoyable sport and exercise in a friendly, fun and highly social, yet professional, manner. Her enthusiasm and willingness to volunteer, to provide and to persuade others to participate in a wide variety of sporting endeavours knows no bounds and makes her stand out as a (if not the) true force behind the many good things that have occurred at the Meres. Earlier this year, she single-handedly organised a day of sporting activity for 130 disabled users, 100 carers and 70 volunteers and, as Swimschool principal, she manages the provision of swimming instruction to 950 local children and adults.What, then, has brought about Sue’s resignation after 15 years at the Meres? Why are the senior managers of Leisure Connection allowing such a highly regarded and valuable asset to leave? This must raise questions about the quality of management within the organisation. As a gym member, I and many of my colleagues have seen a steady degredation in the services and facilities provided and, despite the submission of many customer comment cards, we have received no answers or feedback whatsoever. Is South Kesteven District Council monitoring the performance of this contract well enough? This latest development may be symptomatic of endemic failure in the management of what should be an asset to our town and community.
P. A. High