The Brentwood Leisure Trust (BLT) are the lease holder of the community halls and the Brentwood Centre. For many years the Council have funded the BLT to keep them in a position of solvency.
The Covid 19 pandemic has put huge pressure on Leisure Trusts and providers across the Country. It has also put huge financial pressure on Councils. Brentwood Council is already the BLT’s largest creditor. Their most recent request for additional funding could not be met by the Council so unfortunately as the centre’s lease holder, they will become insolvent. What this means is that the BLT as the lease holder/operator will now cease to exist.
The Brentwood centre however remains and it is our intention that the centre continues to provide the services it has.
The Council, of course had a responsibility to consider contingency plans to prepare for a range of scenarios, potential insolvency of the BLT being one of those. All contingency planning had a simple focus, irrespective of the operator, the centre and halls should remain open to provide a vital and valued community service.
Clearly there will be a transition period whilst practical issues such as key holders, access to the buildings etc. are sorted out. This will be a difficult few days so we ask for your forbearance whilst we endeavour to continue the functioning of the centre and the halls under an interim operator.
Any rumours around turning the land into housing or flats are categorically false and utterly unhelpful.
The Brentwood centre site will remain a key sports and leisure facility in the Borough, this is outlined in our Leisure Strategy and our most recent corporate plan. 2020 continues to be a difficult year but for all the council continues to value the provision vital services including those provided by the Brentwood Centre.
Cllr Chris Hossack (Council Leader)