The University of Lincoln confirmed that the Sports Centre will not be allowing free access to its facilities for students on sports courses. Robin Wright, the university’s director of sport, told The Linc: “We have to be very fair across the whole community of students.”
Sports courses do not require fitness, Wright claims: “Their actual course is not about personal fitness it is about coaching and developing others… and when you look it adds up to nearly well over a thousand students, and that’s increasing.”
The proposal for free access to the Sports Centre was first introduced during a Student Council in November 2009, by Daniel Muckle, a second-year sports development and coaching student. He said he only wants a few hours of free access a week, arguing that this is the same as any other course needing specialist equipment and facilities. “Obviously during the summer it’s not a problem, you can go on runs. But in the winter [it’s dark] and the weather’s atrocious,” Muckle added.
At that meeting Chris Charnley, the SU’s president, said: “The union started [discussions with the sports centre] over the summer,” with a review of the situation expected in early 2010. The Student Council held on February 4th, announced that sports students will not have free access to the Sports Centre due to “fitness not being a requirement” for a sports course
Wright, who attended the Council meeting when the motion was first brought up, told The Linc: “You tend to find that every student would want free access to the gym… we just couldn’t survive to do that and develop sport as well because at the end of the day the money that comes in actually helps develop the sports facilities here at the university, and that’s getting quite strong.”
Currently a yearly membership card to the gym costs £240, but Wright is proposing a reduction in prices: “The one thing I think we can do as well, and I am putting this to the commercial training board that I report to… later on this month, is to actually try to look at reducing the yearly membership by something in the region of £70.
“You’ve got to think about the crisis that HE is in. At the end of the day it is economics and the university would love to give free sports facilities. Every university in the country would like to give free sports facilities.”
— Correction: The original version incorrectly stated plans to reduce the gym membership at the Sports Centre to £70. The paragraph has been amended, reflecting that £70 would represent the savings occurred from the proposed reduction.Tweet