Leisure Report Awards 2008

No sign of an economic downturn at last week’s Leisure Report Awards dinner at the Lords Cricket Ground in London which was a lavish affair for the 150 guests. I was there as a guest of Duncan Rowe, the Editor of Leisure Report who invited me to announce one of the award winners.

What follows is a summary of the some of the key winners.

Graeme Rogers, associate director of JJB Fitness, was presented with the Best Health and Fitness Company trophy by the FIA’s chief executive, Fred Turok. As the last-remaining listed operator of health clubs, JJB’s Fitness arm has outperformed the group’s core sportswear offering consistently and at its year end, revenues from fitness clubs increased by more than 18% to £66m as the company continued its expansion into combined units; JJB has also launched the budget MiFit brand which is looking prescient given the sharp decline in the UK economy.

Nuffield Health picked up the award for the UK leisure deal of the year with its £170 million acquisition of the 52 Cannons health and fitness clubs.

Congratulations are also due to Leisure Connection for picking up the Corporate Social Responsibility Award.