Also in attendance at the opening were Mike Fry, chairman of Verwood Arts & Leisure Amenities, who manage the facility, Cllr Peter Richardson, Mayor of Verwood and the Paralympian cyclist, Darren Kenny.
The gym is one of three facilities in Verwood which have come about following the sale of Verwood Leisure Centre to Morrisons Supermarkets for an enlarged store in the town. The other facilities are the all-weather sports pitch at Potterne Park opened at the beginning of this year and a new sports centre at Emmanuel School to be used by both the school and members of the public which will be open in September.
The 50-station air-conditioned gym is equipped with the latest Technogym range of weight, treadmills, rowers and cross trainers.
At the opening Cllr Malcolm Birr said: “I’m delighted to say that the sale of Verwood Leisure Centre has given the Council the opportunity to work with our partners to radically improve community facilities and services in Verwood and encourage an active and healthy lifestyle.”
Mike Fry said: “I would like to thank the staff from the Leisure Centre and the Hub for their work during the period of integration, my fellow directors who have willingly given many hours to make a success of this project, the district council officers who have been patient and helpful listening to our wishes, wants and whinges and to East Dorset District Council and Verwood Town Council without whose support this new facility would not have been possible.”
Darren Kenny said: “We’re always trying to encourage people to lead a healthy and active lifestyle and everything should be fun, otherwise people are not going to do it. This does everything you need, even giving you a chance to catch up on the latest TV shows while you’re exercising! It’s great for Verwood.”
The gym is open from 7am to 10pm Monday to Friday and from 8.30am to 6.30pm at weekends.
For more information, go to www.lifestyleverwood.com.