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State of the Industry report shows confidence is up

Results from the 8th annual sporta State of Industry survey have revealed that confidence in the medium to long term is up from last year.

There has been a boost in Trusts looking to take over facilities within their area and more than 75 per cent of respondents reported that expansion of existing facilities could be on the cards.

Whilst the study, carried out by Leisure-net Solutions, showed some positive trends, there remained some warnings for the sector. Almost a quarter said that reducing subsidy from, or increasing payments to, the local authority was their primary concern. Other challenges now include hitting membership targets, falling income and rising costs in general. However, on the plus side, in 2008 almost half of respondents highlighted the rise in utility costs as their foremost challenge, whereas this year, whilst still high on the agenda, less than 15 per cent felt it was their primary concern.

Craig McAteer, chair of sporta said: "The sporta State of the Industry report is a vital tool in helping to identify encouraging developments and worrying trends for our sector. This year Trusts were asked whether they measure the impact and outcomes of what they do, which is so important in these challenging times, so it was reassuring to find that more than 80% of the trusts that responded were aware of this need."

Current measurement guides include Trusts aligning their aims, objectives and key performance indicators to Leisure Services Policies and Local Area Agreements, improving data collection and research, and identifying specific responsibilities, as well as employing specialist staff and consultants.

Independent Customer Insight specialist Leisure-net has carried out the sporta State of the Industry study for the last seven years, creating a strong barometer for the cultural and leisure trust sector.

Mike Hill, managing director of Leisure-net said: "This is the eighth year that we have carried out the sporta State of the Industry research and the growth in Trusts responding shows the importance of this survey to the cultural and leisure trust sector. Almost 70 per cent of sporta members took part this year, representing a solid base of trusts across the UK in terms of location, size and type."

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Results from the 8th annual sporta State of Industry survey have revealed that confidence in the medium to long term is up from last year.
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