LEISURE: Service seems non-existent

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I see that Active Northumberland is again in the news from irate customers.

As a long-term user of the gym at the sports centre at Willowburn, I have seen a deterioration in satisfaction by customers since this organisation took over the running of the complex.

A number of my friends have moved elsewhere due to increased charges, and now I hear that gym staff are to have their hours of employment reduced to the point that some will have to leave. These instructors have enormous experience, which cannot be replaced easily.

In August I purchased three Active Northumberland cards for my daughter and two grandchildren. These cards meant a reduction in price for all the sports centre activities. When we tried to use the cards a month later I was told they had been discontinued. Ever since I have been trying to get a refund.

Willowburn staff are not authorised to make a refund. My email to Active Northumberland didn’t even get an acknowledgement. Phone calls get lost in a central call centre. Customer service seems non-existent.

Active Northumberland states that clients at Alnwick can use facilities all over Northumberland, and how wonderful it is. I do not want to use facilities in other towns, I use Alnwick because I live there.

Each sports centre is different, and though it might be convenient to have one overall charging system as far as ease of administration is concerned, a good organisation would take extra trouble and treat them individually.

Sport centres should be run for the benefit of their clients, not the ease of the administrators.

Fred Watson,

Alnwick Moor