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Latest News and Press Releases

Here you will find all the latest news and press releases relating to Link4Life, including articles published Rochdale Borough Council.

Xplorer Is Coming to A Park Near You!

Keep an eye out for Xplorer in parks across the country this summer. The fun family friendly challenge is back in more locations with a range of new markers.

British Orienteering have launched a range of new markers including sports, space, transport and professions to complement the existing markers. In celebration of the new markers Xplorer families are encouraged to enter a competition to win a family trip to one of Gulliver's Theme Parks. The competition is open to any family taking part and will be running across the school holidays on the Xplorer Facebook page.

In conjunction with Sport England and Link4Life, Hollingworth Lake Activity Centre will be hosting Xplorer events throughout the school holidays.

Xplorer is a fun family challenge aimed at primary and pre-school children and their parents, grandparents and guardians. It is an outdoor navigational challenge for the whole family to enjoy and involves a healthy mix of physical activity and decision making. Using a simple map of the park the aim is to find the points marked on the map and write down the name of the secret animal or colour you find on the marker. No experience of map reading is necessary, and Xplorer is perfect for children as they can run around in a safe and friendly environment and will have a great adventure searching for the secret markers.

A series of Xplorer events will be taking place this summer at Hollingworth Lake Activity Centre. Families are invited to come and have fun exploring the park.

Natalie Weir from Xplorer said, "The Xplorer events will provide a fantastic opportunity to get the whole family up and active, introduce map reading and decision making skills and most importantly not have to go far to have lots of fun with their families in the local parks!"

Come along and join in the fun, or to find out more please visit

Explore the Park, Find the New Markers, Complete the Challenge, Have fun together!

For further information, please contact Hollingworth Lake Activity Centre Tel: 01706 370499 Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. .

Xplorer is a product of British Orienteering the National Governing Body for the sport of orienteering in the United Kingdom.

Rochdale Leisure Centre £500k fitness refurbishment

Rochdale Leisure Centre’s fitness suite re-opened on Saturday 2nd July following a £500k refurbishment.

The facility now includes the industry’s most advanced cardio equipment, including internet connectivity and Life Fitness’s Lifescape range, the latest Powerplates, an extended free-weights area and an all new functional training zone including TRX. Plus you can cycle around Paris or hike and run through New Zealand amongst others.

Other facility improvements include a fully refurbished sauna and the recent introduction of coach by colour indoor cycling classes powered by Matrix’s IC7 bikes.

The facility opens 6.30am–10.30pm weekdays and 8am-6pm on weekends and boasts two swimming pools, a thermal suite and a four court sports hall.

The improvements at Rochdale Leisure Centre are part of a rolling 4 year project of investment worth over £1m within the fitness suites to ensure that the local facilities have the most up to date equipment possible and to ensure continuous improvement.

Speaking at the launch, Gillian Bishop Chief Executive of Link4Life said: ‘We are very proud of the leading edge, high quality facilities which we have across the Borough. The investment in Rochdale Leisure Centre is part of an ongoing investment strategy to ensure that we continue to innovate and provide excellent value for money services to our customers. Our customers have provided very positive feedback about the new layout and equipment and we continue to work with them to ensure we constantly improve our offer to respond to their requirements.’

The facility was reopened by Councillor Janet Emsley, Cabinet Member for Culture, Health and Wellbeing who said: ‘It is great to see Link4Life investing in the refurbishment of the gym at Rochdale Leisure Centre. It was good to see the number of people waiting to try out the new equipment as soon as it was opened on Saturday morning! The people of the Borough now have access to state of the art equipment which can only be a good thing with regards to their Health and Wellbeing. This refurbishment follows on from the recent one at our Littleborough Sports Centre’.


Nominate your local sporting and culture heroes

rbsca-poster-2016The borough of Rochdale is once again getting ready to recognise and celebrate its own local sporting and culture heroes! If you know a 'Person', 'Club' or 'Organisation' that has made a difference through sport and culture in your neighbourhood or community, then make sure you nominate them for the Rochdale Borough Sports and Culture Awards 2015-16.

The Sports Award Categories for nomination are:

  • Sports Achiever of the Year
  • Unsung Hero
  • Changing Lifestyles Recognition of the Year
  • Volunteer of the Year
  • Coach of the Year
  • Disabled Sports Achiever of the Year
  • Club of the Year

The Culture Award Categories for nomination are:

  • Cultural Event of the Year
  • Artist of the Year
  • Community and Education Project Award
  • Facilitator of the Year
  • Culture and Health Award
  • Cultural Champion Award
  • Young Creative Award

Nominations should cover achievements during the period September 2015 to June 2016. The criteria is set on the quality of the nomination and not the number of nominations each individual gets. Individuals, clubs and organisation can nominate themselves. All you have to do is visit and follow the instructions on how to nominate. Closing date for ALL nominations is Sunday 26 June 2016.

Speaking about the Awards Ceremony, Darren Grice - Head of Culture, Health and Participation at Link4Life said: "The Rochdale Sports and Culture Awards are a fantastic opportunity to celebrate the creative and sporting talent in the Borough. We want to shine a light on the creativity and determination of individuals, groups and organisations making a real difference in Rochdale. This year we are also inviting local businesses to get involved and sponsor the awards. Recruitment Solutions North West, Pelican Rouge and Debit Finance Collections have already pledged their support; other businesses interested in joining them should get in touch with us at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. ."

All nominees and winners will be announced at a special awards ceremony at Middleton Arena on Thursday 22 September 2016.

Opening up… memories, conversations and heritage

opening-upA new community inspired exhibition by Touchstones Museum Service will highlight Alzheimer's Society's Dementia Awareness week by displaying personal, heart-warming memories of individuals who attend the Alzheimer's Society's Memory Wellbeing Cafes in Middleton, Heywood and Milnrow. The celebration event will take place on Wednesday 18 May 2016.

The new community led exhibition called 'Opening Up...' invited people who attend Alzheimer's Society Memory cafes to take part in arts activities and do behind the scenes tours of the museum collection to trigger and spark memories from the past including stories of glamourous followers of fashion, working life in the local textile mills and the honour of being May Queen for 'Whit Walks'. Inspired by their stories, artists Alison Cooper, Trish Cartner and Vincent James have created new illustrations and sculpture to sit alongside museum objects in this exciting display.

Free Fitness for Armed Forces extended

Link4Life is to continue to offer serving armed forces personnel free use of its fitness facilities and swimming pools for a further twelve months to the end of March 2017. And thanks to the success of the scheme that was set to come to an end in March 2016, Link4Life’s board of trustees has also extended the use of the scheme for veterans in the community who are out of work.

Since the scheme started in June 2013, Link4Life have had over 24,000 visits with 5,000 of those occurring since April 2015.

The response from those taking part has been extremely positive.

The armed forces discount has been a key factor in the pilot’s success as one of the top three reasons for taking part with the other two being the range of facilities available and the location of the centres.

Link4Life manages leisure and cultural facilities on behalf of Rochdale Borough Council. Both organisations signed the Armed Forces Community Covenant in November 2012, aimed at encouraging local communities to support services that promote and encourage activities that help integrate Armed Forces personnel back into civilian life.