GLL is a Charitable Social Enterprise owned by our staff and founded on our purpose and values to provide a different, fairer and better way of doing business.
Our purpose is to improve the physical, mental and social wellbeing of local communities.
What do we do?
We are committed to the provision of leisure, fitness and cultural activities and facilities at affordable prices. It is our aim to ensure the financial viability of our organisation, meeting our charitable social objectives, harnessing employee ownership and maintaining and expanding our existing services. We endeavour to continually exceed customer expectations.
We operate over 240 leisure centres, 120 libraries and 15 children's centres in partnership with 50 local councils, public agencies and sporting organisations.
Our centres include some of the most prestigious sporting facilities in the UK such as the Copper Box Arena, Lee Valley VeloPark, London Aquatics Centre, Manchester Aquatics Centre, Manchester National Cycling Centre along with essential community facilities that we believe are invaluable to local communities.
Where did we come from?
In 1993, Greenwich Council needed to find a new way to run its leisure centres because of public spending cuts and together, we came up with a new model - the first of its kind in UK leisure. GLL was born.
Seven centres were transferred to us, and success quickly followed. We created jobs and added new services to existing leisure centres. Since then, we’ve built lots of new facilities in the UK and our membership has gone from about 7,000 to more than 800,000 with over 50 million visits a year.
In 1996, we began expanding outside Greenwich and now run all kinds of community services and spaces across the UK - from Belfast to Bromley, Carlisle to Cardiff.
What make us different?
We are a not-for-profit leisure and cultural social enterprise which means a business run on charitable lines, which is dedicated to improving the lives of its customers.
Our ethos means any trading surpluses do not line the pockets of corporate fat cats or dividend-earning shareholders (we have none) but are reinvested in the service - removing barriers to participation, developing our staff and investing in grassroots sports development.
Since 1993 we have been able to re-invest over £100m back into our facilities and services.
Where are we heading?
GLL is now almost 30 years old and we’re as excited about the future today, as we were back in 1993.
At GLL we don't just run leisure centres, swimming pools, lidos or gyms - we provide for the whole community running libraries, theatres, children's centres, playgrounds, nurseries and so much more. All of which we run in our charitable, community-focused way.
We believe our values and purpose have never been more relevant and hope we can continue to make a difference in as many communities as possible across the UK.