Shetland Recreational Trust has confirmed that it will be closing its eight leisure centres for a fortnight over Christmas and New Year despite pleas from swimming groups and the Unst community to reconsider.
At a meeting of trustees on Thursday calls for the SRT to rethink its decision – including a 186-signature petition – were considered but, due to the financial position the trust is currently facing, they felt there was no alternative but to confirm their decision to close.
SRT chairman Joe Irvine said: “Trustees also noted that the financial position for 2010/11 was not likely to improve so further service reductions may be required.”
The trust has had to find substantial savings as a result of cuts imposed by its funding body Shetland Charitable Trust. As well as a funding settlement £300,000 below what it had been hoping for, the SRT had to find a further £300,000-worth of savings in the current financial year, £20,000 of which is coming by shutting down the leisure centres over the festive period.