Open up your sports assets

Opening your sports facilities up during the summer holidays will generate additional income for your school while helping local children benefit from sport and physical activity

The summer is here and independent schools up and down the county have closed their gates for the long break. Instead of leaving sports and physical activity facilities to stand idle all summer, schools could open these valuable spaces up to the wider community, says Matt Sanders, Managing Director of Paragon Structures, specialist provider of modern, energy-efficient sports buildings to the education sector.

“Independent schools have some of the best sports facilities in the country. Hiring out these fantastic assets over the summer holiday is a great way to secure income while also providing a much-needed service to the local community.”

Research by ukactive shows that children and young people suffer a loss in fitness levels of up to 80% over the summer holidays, with the fitness of those from low-income families falling 18 times faster than their more affluent peers. This mirrors ‘summer learning loss’, with a report by the Education Policy Institute showing that schoolchildren who were eligible for free school meals for 80% of their time at school were, on average, 24 months behind their classmates – it is estimated that 66% of the achievement gap can be explained by summer learning loss.

“Independent schools already work with state schools and partners in a variety of ways to share their resources and provide positive experiences for local children. Opening up their sports facilities can build on this great work and provide positive school holiday experiences for children and young people who really need it,” says Sanders.

Figures from the Independent Schools Council’s (ISC) latest annual report show that private schools have the following sports facilities, which local children could benefit from out of hours:

  • Sports fields – 66%
  • Tennis courts – 58%
  • Astroturf – 53%
  • Swimming pools – 42%
  • Sports centres – 42%
  • Dance studios – 36%
  • Fitness centres – 35%


“High-quality sports and physical activity facilities like the award-winning golf and cricket structures we built for Millfield School can benefit children’s mental, physical and emotional health. Schools are missing a trick by not opening these facilities up to local youngsters during the holidays,” says Sanders.

Completed in under half the time of traditional sports buildings, Paragon’s sports structures are bespoke to each school’s specifications allows schools to offer a wide range of activities from tennis, cricket and swimming to netball, parkour and martial arts.

Meeting Sport England standards, the buildings feature vast clear-span interiors, generous roof heights and translucent daylight panels that ensure abundant natural light, while the superior insulation means a comfortable year-round playing environment with reduced running costs.

“Opening their gates to children from the wider community during the summer break is an easy way for schools to increase revenue while helping more young people to stay active and engaged during the holidays so they too can benefit from some of the fantastic sports facilities on offer in the education sector,” says Sanders.

Contact us to see how we can revitalise your school’s sports facilities

Paragon Structures  |  01225 618188  |  |



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