New leisure centre wins fans on its opening day

The newly refurbished Wymondham Leisure Centre which has been officially reopened by(l to r) SNDC ch

The newly refurbished Wymondham Leisure Centre which has been officially reopened by(l to r) SNDC chairman David Bills, leader John Fuller, oldest member Eric Couzens and ward councillor Lee Hornby. PHOTO BY SIMON FINLAY - Credit: SIMON FINLAY

Ninety-six-year-old Eric Couzens has given Wymondham's new leisure centre his seal of approval.

The centre's oldest member said he was 'bowled over' by the Norfolk Road facility, which re-opened today (Monday) following a year-long £3.5m refurbishment.

Mr Couzens, who works out at the gym three times a week, said: 'I'm overwhelmed. It's such an improvement over the last one.

'It's all brand new equipment and there's somewhere I can sit down for a coffee with my friends.'

Mr Couzens has been a member since he was 82 and he said he had no plans to stop.

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'If I stayed at home I'd just fade away. It's nice to come here and see many people I know.'

Mr Couzens helped to cut a ribbon marking the centre's opening along with South Norfolk Council leader Councillor John Fuller, chairman, Cllr David Bills and Cllr Lee Hornby.

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The centre includes a refurbished pool, expanded gym and new cafe, spa and physical treatment areas.

Cllr Fuller said finishing the centre on time and on budget had been a 'fantastic team effort'.

He said: 'We've added 10,000sq ft, and there are 60 classes a week.

'We now have something of a quality you would expect from the private operators.'

Cllr Fuller said the goal was to boost the number of annual visits to the centre from 500,000 to 750,000.

Cllr Hornby called the centre 'awesome'. He said: 'When you walk into the gym you just go 'wow'.

'It's got to be one of the best in Norfolk and beyond.'

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