Olympic star opens £30m Edge Hill sports facility

A brand new Sports Centre was recently opened at Edge Hill University, by Olympic heptathlete Katarina Johnson-Thompson

The centre houses an eight-court sports hall with viewing gallery for basketball, netball, badminton, five-a-side football and general sports use, a 25m swimming pool, an 80-station fitness suite, aerobics studio, health suite with sauna and steam rooms, a café and lounge area.

The international competition standard outdoor facilities include one of the largest running tracks in Europe, rugby, hockey and football pitches, an athletics field, netball and tennis courts and a ‘trim trail’ with exercise stations.

New ecological features and wildlife habitats have also been created, including mixed-woodland areas and footpaths linking to nearby Ruff Wood, wildflower meadows, open grassland and a new wildlife pond, and structural screen planting and hedgerow replacement. The whole development incorporates sustainable drainage and low carbon design and building technologies.

Katarina Johnson-Thompson was joined for the opening by philanthropist and entrepreneur Barrie Wells, who has sponsored her throughout her career.

Barrie Wells said: “Sport has a powerful influence on the lives of many individuals and I am certain that this incredible new facility at Edge Hill will benefit a wide variety of people ranging from students and staff, to grassroot level sports and professional athletes.” 

Katarina added: “I’ve been to Edge Hill a number of times, including with a group of schoolchildren and also to see my sponsor Barrie Wells be awarded an Honorary Degree by the University, and it’s fantastic to be back for the opening of this amazing facility.”

Dr John Cater, Vice-Chancellor at Edge Hill University said: “These sector-leading sports facilities have been ten years and over £30m in the making.  Top quality outdoor pitches, full-size 3G surfaces for year-round sport, an international standard athletics track and, now, a new eight -court sports hall, hundred-station fitness suite, 25m pool, sauna and steam room, all built to five-star hotel standards 

The Sports Centre at Edge Hill is open to the public as well as providing facilities for students. For more information on membership options, visit: https://www.edgehill.ac.uk/edgehillsport/membership-options/