LEISURE centre staff are celebrating winning a top award.

St Peter’s Leisure Centre in Burnley has been named Local Authority Gym of the Year at the National Fitness Awards.

The awards ­— billed as the UK’s biggest fitness awards ­— recognise excellence and achievement in gyms and individuals across the country.

St Peter’s, which has members aged between four and 87, emerged triumphant from an extended shortlist of entries from 2020 and 2021 after last year’s awards were cancelled due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

Scott Bryce, head of group operations at Burnley Leisure and Culture (BLC) which runs St Peter’s, said: “We are immensely proud to be named local authority/ leisure trust gym of the year.

“This recognition is for the whole team at BLC group for their hard work, dedication, and passion to provide the ultimate health and wellbeing experiences to our local community.

“It’s been a really challenging period over the last two years for the leisure industry, as it’s been for everyone, and it’s a huge achievement to be named winners, especially with additional nominations rolled over from last year’s entries.”

Since the Covid-19 pandemic struck, BLC has created more than 400 fitness and healthy living videos for adults, children and people with learning disabilities. And while leisure facilities were closed BLC educated its members on the technology needed to access videos and other online content; held weekly online question and answer sessions with members; conducted 23 classes per week via Zoom and loaned essential fitness equipment to members

It also delivered PE lessons in schools and support sessions for schools’ non-PE staff; held pre- and post-natal fitness classes; and organised aerobic workshops for people with learning disabilities.

Staff say membership is now back at pre-Covid levels.