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Somers Town Community Sports Centre re-opening ceremony


Trustees, former trustees, staff and students of UCL, UCLU (the UCL Students’ Union of UCL) and Regent High School, and guests today celebrated the opening of the refurbished Somers Town Community Sports Centre, part of the rebuilding of Regent High School. 

The Sports Centre, located on Chalton Street in Somers Town, Camden, is a partnership between the London Borough of Camden, Regent High School, UCLU and UCL.  The Sports Centre provides affordable high-quality activities and sport and recreation spaces for training, competition and physical activity for the benefit of the Somers Town community, students of Regent High School and other local schools, and students of UCL.

The Centre originally opened in February 1996.  It originally comprised male and female changing rooms and a six badminton court hall, marked for badminton, basketball, football, netball, volleyball, and also available for indoor bowls, cricket, dance, gymnastics, martial arts, fitness and aerobics classes.

The original construction costs were £1.35million, of which £600,000 was funded by UCLU and the remaining £750,000 was funded from a grant from the Foundation for Sport and the Arts.

The Sports Centre was refurbished and integrated into the plan for the new Regent High School under the previous Government’s Building Schools for the Future programme.  Completed in January 2012, the refurbished and extended sports facilities now also include an Activities Studio with a sprung floor that can be used for dance and gymnastics, table tennis, fitness activities and martial arts.  On completion of the rebuilding of Regent High School, the sports facilities will be augmented by three multi-use games areas (MUGAs), which will also form part of the community resource outside of school hours.

The Somers Town Community Sports Centre is managed by Regent High School on behalf of the trustees, who are drawn from UCL, UCLU and Regent High School.  The trustees seek to maintain access to the facility in line with the original charitable objectives of providing access to state-of-the-art facilities for the students of UCL and Regent High School, and for members of the local community.

The Centre was officially re-opened by the President and Provost of UCL, Professor Michael Arthur.  The Chair of Trustees of the Sports Centre, Alan Chesters, and the Headteacher of Regent High School, Rosemary Leeke, welcomed guests to the refurbished Sports Centre, and the Deputy Mayor of Camden, Councillor Lazarro Pietragnoli, also spoke at the event.

Guests observed the facilities in use by local schoolchildren and students from Regent High School.  Regent High School’s Sports Leaders were present, along with trustees and sabbatical officers from UCLU.  Staff from the three partner organisations attended also, along with elected representatives and staff from the London Borough of Camden.

Alan Chesters, Chair of the Somers Town Community Sports Centre Trustees, said: ‘The Centre has always been a wonderful facility for schools, students and the community alike. It is now splendidly refurbished and extended to provide even more benefits over at least the next 15 years.’

Rosemary Leeke, Headteacher of Regent High School, said: ‘Regent High School is privileged to manage the Somers Town Community Sports Centre on behalf of the trustees.  Our students are very fortunate to have the use of such excellent facilities for their PE lessons and extra-curricular sports programme.’

Somers Town Community Sports Centre re-opening ceremony, Professor Michael Arthur, Regent High Head Rosemary Leeke, Councillor Lazarro Pietragnoli and Trustee Alan Chesters. (Photo by Jirawin Win Tochirakul UCL PhotoSoc.)