Agenda item


            The Committee considered the undernoted report:


“1.0     Purpose of Report or Summary of main Issues


1.1       To present proposals for reporting on performance and contract compliance in relation to GLL and the leisure management contract.


2.0       Recommendations


2.1       The Committee is asked to consider:


·        The proposed contract compliance and performance report schedules presented below at 3.5, 3.6 and in Appendices 1 and 2.

·        To consider the recommendation that GLL only attend committee meetings as required to present or be available to respond to queries in relation to specific reports or topics.


3.0       Main report




3.1       In November 2020 SP&R agreed to review the tri-partite leisure model and the Active Belfast Limited (ABL) Board, including its membership and governance arrangements.  Terms of reference were approved in June 2021 and First Point Management and Consultancy Limited were appointed to conduct the review. 


            The final review report was presented to the SP&R Committee on 25th March 2022.  After consideration the committee approved Option 3 as the preferred way forward.  Namely, to bring Contract Compliance and Performance Monitoring of GLL back into the Council and commence the winding up of ABL.  The committee decision was subsequently ratified by Council on 4th April.


            ABL has been dormant since 6th June and will remain so until formally dissolved.


            Contract compliance, performance management and financial transactions have been managed through City and Neighbourhood Services (CNS) (previously as Parks & Leisure) since the contract with GLL commenced on 1st January 2015.  Until June 2022 reoprts were present to ABL and into Council through SP&R.  On 18th November SP&R agreed that future governance and reporting would be through the People and Communites Committee (P&C).  The decision was ratified by Council on 1st December.


            Proposals for committee consideration include general oversight arrangements, periodic reports, key performance indicators, budgets and financial transactions and audit/risk assurances.


3.2       Outcomes and proposals


            This paper sets out proposed report schedules for governance and performance monitoring of the leisure management contract.  The process will be delivered through CNS including the preparation of committee reports.


            CNS will continue to gather and collate contract compliance evidence and performance data as previously required for reporting through ABL.


3.4       Committee reporting and governance overview


            Following the decision to bring management of the GLL leisure contract back under direct Council control, all related reports will be presented through the P&C committee.


            An extensive schedule of reports is defined within the conditions of contract.  An established schedule has evolved since 2015 and is now well established.  Contract governance and performance reporting mechanisms have always been subject to review by the Council’s Audit, Governance & Risk unit.


3.5       Contract compliance


            CNS takes the central role in collating information and works with Corporate H&S, Corporate finance, Audit, Governance and Risk Services and BCC Legal Services to review and present assurances.


            Contract compliance requirements are set out within the legally binding contract between BCC and GLL.  As these contractual requirements will remain unchanged, it is proposed that the same suite of check mechanisms and assurance reports be retained as part of direct Council governance procedures.  For example, existing mechanisms include:


a)     Assurances on key BCC/GLL policy alignments

b)     Health and Safety (including Safeguarding) reporting

c)     Timelines for submission of key annual proposals around, pricing, programming, marketing and promotion, sports development, community engagement, etc.


3.6       Performance reporting


            Periodic performance report measures and formats have evolved since contract commencement in January 2015.  The current scorecard format has provided consistent and comparable management information for the last four years.  Nine key performance indicators (KPI’s) are presented under the following three themes:


a)     Business (financial)


-       Labour cost recovery

-       Expenditure recovery

-       Cost per visit


b)     Membership


-       Pre-Paid monthly membership net gain

-       Pay & Play membership net gain

-       Swim School membership net gain


c)     Occupancy


-       Main hall occupancy to capacity ratio

-       Studio occupancy to capacity ratio

-       Synthetic Pitch occupancy to capacity ratio


            A sample scorecard (quarter 1 2022/23 example) is presented at Appendix 1, available on  Quarterly scorecards present current quarter, last quarter, same quarter last year and current year to date data for comparative purposes.


            The above KPI’s present a solid overview of contract performance.  All three themes are accepted within the wider leisure industry as key drivers of overall performance.


            To provide the above, CNS would continue to collate more detailed data, beyond the nine listed KPI’s, which would be retained on file should additional or more specific ad-hoc performance analysis be requested.


3.7       It is recommended that contract compliance and performance reports be presented at a strategic level to Committee on a six-monthly basis presented in November and May.  This would allow for sufficient time to collate and verify management information data related to the preceding six-month periods of April to September and October to March. 


            Additional annual reports requiring approval by specific dates will be presented as detailed in Appendix 2, available on


            Given the timeline around the transfer of contract governance from ABL to Council, the first report covering April to September 2022 will be presented to committee in January 2023.  The routine biannual report cycle (November and May) will resume from May 2023.


            CNS would continue to collate monthly management information data on a centre-by-centre level.  Unless otherwise requested, six monthly committee reports would be presented at a strategic overall service level supported by centre specific performance examples where appropriate.


            An annual report schedule is presented for consideration in Appendix 2, available on  The schedule reflects the sequence of reports historically presented through ABL.


3.8       Summary


            Members are requested to consider the contract compliance and performance report schedule proposals set out above and below in Appendices 1 and 2.


            Key elements of the proprosed schedule are:


a)     Six monthly reports on contract compliance and performance at a strategic level.

b)     Annual reports on specifc issues requiring approval by defined dates as set out in the conditions of contract.

c)     CNS will contiue to gather detailed data and will present all reports to P&C committee.

d)     At members discretion GLL will be available to attend meetings to respond to questions relating to relevant reports.


            Members are requested to consider:


            The proposed contract compliance and performance report schedules presented above at 3.5, 3.6 and below in Appendices 1 and 2.


            The recommendation that GLL attend committee meetings as required to present or be available to respond to queries in relation to specific reports or topics.


3.9       Communications & Public Relations




3.10     Financial & Resource Implications




3.11     Equality or Good Relations Implications/

            Rural Needs Assessment




            The Committee adopted the recommendations as outlined at 2.0 and 2.1 of the report.


Supporting documents: