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Ipswich Fitness Club closes after failed attempt to renegotiate rent charges

PUBLISHED: 14:51 12 November 2020 | UPDATED: 17:18 13 November 2020

Ipswich Fitness Club, formerly owned by DW Sports, will not be reopening when the Covid-19 lockdown ends in December Picture: ARCHANT

Ipswich Fitness Club, formerly owned by DW Sports, will not be reopening when the Covid-19 lockdown ends in December Picture: ARCHANT

Archant

An Ipswich gym which was taken over in the summer has announced it will not be reopening when the second coronavirus lockdown is lifted next month.

The site was taken over Frasers Group in the summer Picture: JAMES CARRThe site was taken over Frasers Group in the summer Picture: JAMES CARR

Ipswich Fitness Club, in Ranelagh Road, has contacted members to inform them of the parent company’s decision to close the gym on Thursday.

Everlast Fitness Clubs, who manage the gym, has cited unaffordable rent costs as one of the reasons for its closure.

The site was previously managed by DW Sports, but its future was thrown into doubt in August when the firm entered administration - putting thousands of jobs across the country at risk.

Frasers Group, which owns Everlast and is fronted by tycoon Mike Ashley, subsequently bought DW Sports out of administration in a deal worth up to £44million.

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The group reopened 45 DW gyms under the Everlast brand several weeks later, including the Ipswich site.

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However, the doors were closed as the nation went into a second lockdown this month and they will not reopen.

Members who have been charged a direct debit payment for November will be refunded, Everlast has confirmed.

An email sent to members said: “After a delayed opening due to Covid restrictions we were pleased to announce the gym was re-opening and we were looking forward to welcoming you back.

“Throughout the past few months, our priority has been to try to renegotiate rents with landlords, as it was immediately apparent that your Ipswich fitness club would not be sustainable without us doing so.

“The importance of the negotiation was to allow job security and provide a long term future for the club.

“Regrettably, we have been unsuccessful in our discussions with the landlord, which means keeping Ipswich open is no longer financially viable.

“Therefore, it is with tremendous sadness that we announce that Ipswich fitness club will not be reopening when lockdown restrictions in England are lifted.

“We want to say an enormous thank you to all of our members, who have been loyal and supportive over many years. We must also thank the staff for their devotion.”

MORE: Ipswich gym at risk as parent company goes into administration


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