EMPA helps bring new sports hub to Rutland

A scheme to provide a new sport and community centre on the site of a former prison in Oakham, Rutland has been completed by empa (East Midlands Property Alliance) framework partner, Clegg Construction.

The £700,000 new Active Rutland Hub has been completed for client Rutland County Council at Oakham Enterprise Park – the site of the former Ashwell Prison.  The hub will be officially opened by Princess Anne as part of a royal visit to Rutland on 20th July.

The work included upgrading the existing steel framed building and creating a new sports hall and changing rooms for community sports.  The redevelopment also included providing new facilities for females – as previously the changing rooms and toilets at the prison site were male-only.

The scheme is the first to be delivered by Clegg Construction through the empa framework.

The aim of empa, which was formed by local authorities in the East Midlands and is managed by Scape, is to improve the procurement and delivery of construction projects and property maintenance for public sector bodies saving time and money for them and in turn for council taxpayers.

Ross Crowcroft, pre-construction director at Clegg Construction, said: “We’re thrilled to have completed this scheme in Rutland which will boost the community sports facilities available for members of the public.

“We were delighted to be working as an empa partner and are pleased to see our first scheme completed as part of the framework and open for use.”

Lewis Hopcroft, project manager at Rutland County Council, said procuring the expert services of Clegg Construction through empa had proved highly successful.

“Clegg Construction’s work included installing a high performance sports floor, reducing the need for regular maintenance.  The improved facilities will give us whole-life cost savings, helping us to provide community sports more efficiently for years to come.

“This project is part of the wider redevelopment of the site and provides another publically funded sports facility for Oakham, catering for a wide variety of sports, including the likes of boccia and dodgeball.”

Alan Coole, head of empa, added: “Projects such as this help to boost the health and well-being of local people.  Community schemes are at the heart of what empa delivers as we help local authorities and other public sector bodies improve their local environments and better serve their local residents.

“Clients also see a boost for their local economy with empa investing in the local supply chain and creating employment opportunities too,” Alan added.

Councillor Terry King, portfolio holder for development at Rutland County Council, said: “Rutland is widely regarded as one of the best places to live in the UK and is also the nation’s most active county.

“Sport and physical activity are not just important for health and well-being but also play a vital role in our local economy, as well as helping to forge strong communities. Having watched the site transform over many months we look forward to seeing residents benefit from the new facilities for many years to come.”

Work by empa covers all types of public sector buildings, including schools, FE colleges, universities, housing, NHS, care homes, leisure facilities, libraries and more.

empa has a range of framework contractors including G F Tomlinson, Ashe Construction, Morgan Sindall, Wates, Lindum, Interserve, Clegg Construction, Robert Woodhead and Jeakins Weir which deliver projects across the wider region.

empa operates across the wider East Midlands region covering city and county areas in Nottinghamshire, Derbyshire, Leicestershire, Rutland, Lincolnshire, Northamptonshire, Warwickshire and in Peterborough, Solihull, Coventry and Staffordshire Moorlands.