Latest news & views


MonLife celebrates launch with multi activity school festival

On Friday 17th January MonLife celebrated its official launch with a Multi Activity School Festival at Monmouth Leisure Centre.

The festival saw 85 children attend from Osbaston, Kymin View and Trellech Primary. The children had chance to take part in a number of sessions that included boccia, learning, football, team building plus much more. The sessions showcased the diversity of MonLife and the fantastic services that we have to offer.

The strategic focus of MonLife is on physical and mental health and wellbeing, providing opportunities in learning and experiencing, achieving a more physically active lifestyle for all. Health and wellbeing are embedded in every service area of MonLife and this means that we are ready to play a part and support schools in the launch of the new curriculum.

Richard John, Cabinet Member for Education and Leisure, said “I was delighted to attend the official launch of MonLife, which brings under one umbrella our leisure and community services for the first time.

Our MonLife services are really important for the mental and physical wellbeing of all local residents and that’s why we’re investing and upgrading facilities, including our leisure centres. We want to ensure that as many residents as possible can take part, evidenced by our insport Silver Award for improving access for disabled people.

This launch embodies our commitment to protect locally accessible services for residents, including helping people lead more active and independent lives through our array of diverse services and facilities.

The whole day was of celebration of our services and enhanced the vision to enrich people’s lives and create vibrant places. I hope as many residents as possible will take up the opportunity to experience our wonderful facilities and services and see for themselves how MonLife can impact on the mind, body and soul of our community.”


Monlife awarded top accolade for supporting disabled people accessing sport

Monlife is celebrating being given a top award for helping people with disabilities accessing sport.

The service group managed by Monmouthshire County Council was awarded the insport Silver Standard at Full Council by Michelle Daltry Partnership Manager, Disability Sport Wales on Thursday 16th of January.

The insport Development programme aims to support and deliver inclusivity for disabled people through a toolkit developed by Disability Sport Wales, supporting the inclusive thinking, planning, development and delivery.  This means that MonLife Active staff can deliver across the spectrum to disabled and non-disabled people at whatever level they wish to participate or compete.

By achieving this standard opportunities are widened, participation will increase, disabled people become more active and engaged and we have a nation who are hooked on sport for life.  This will deliver a cultural change in attitude, approach and provision of physical activity and wider opportunities for disabled people.

Throughout the four standards; Ribbon, Bronze, Silver and Gold, each partner is supported by Disability Sport Wales to grow their expertise and understanding of disability sport. With the aim of Partners becoming progressively more independent and able to demonstrate improved delivery and support to disabled people.

Councillor Richard John, Cabinet Member for Education and Leisure said: “Achieving the Silver award demonstrates the commitment to inclusion from MonLife and Monmouthshire Council to increase sporting opportunities for disabled people and our ongoing commitment in  playing a significant role in building sustainable and resilient communities, reducing inequalities and supporting vulnerable people.  Cabinet fully supports the journey to the Gold Accreditation”.

Michelle Daltry, Partnership Manager at Disability Sport Wales said “Disability Sport Wales wish to congratulate MonLife on their achievement of the insport silver standard.  It is a real testament to the calibre of work they are currently doing and have committed to do in the future, and will ensure the ongoing development of inclusive sports to disabled communities in the Monmouthshire area.  Congratulations to all involved.”

As MonLife continues on its insport Development journey receiving the Silver standard is a real testament to all staff involved.  MonLife are committed that all service areas will illustrate the inclusive cultural change by going through the insport accreditation with core aims to include its partnership working with Education, Health and Social Services.


Monmouthshire’s Countryside Access Network

Monmouthshire’s countryside access network, outside of the National Park, remains open for the public to use. We will keep this under review and the situation may change if areas are identified where groups of people are congregating and actively ignoring measures set out by the Government.

Please follow the requirements for social distancing and use local walking routes from your home, not driving into the countryside for your walk.  We have closed the car parks at Caldicot Castle Country Park and at Blackrock Picnic Site to keep people safe – please do not drive to these and other countryside sites. 

Many footpaths and bridleways cross private land, working farms and in some cases are close to private homes. Please keep to the paths, keep your distance from landowners and continue to follow the restrictions and measures which are in place to protect you and others.  Also remember that it is lambing season and dogs must always be kept under control.

Any future path closure notices under The Health Protection (Coronavirus, Closure of Leisure Businesses, Footpaths and Access Land) (Wales) Regulations 2020 will be published online here.


MonLife Venue Closures Update

Dear MonLife Customer

The decision has been made to close all 4 MonLife Leisure Centres from Friday 20th March at 10pm

This was not a decision that has been taken lightly, over the last few weeks staff have been working relentlessly to provide a safe environment for you and we would like to thank you for the support that you have shown them.

Our customers and staff as well as the community are our priority. Due to staff shortages, protecting health, and redistributing resources to support priority areas across Monmouthshire County Council, we have to close until further notice.

Memberships

We would like to reassure you that there will be no direct debit payment taken during the period that the Leisure Centres are closed and we will be automatically freezing your membership from tomorrow. You do not need to do anything we will arrange any alteration to your direct debit payment when we are back open to ensure you have not lost out during the time of closure.

Swimming Lessons

As with the memberships your swimming lesson membership will be automatically frozen. If you have a direct debit with us then we will not be taking any payments during the time that we are closed. As soon as we know when we will re-open we will let you know so that you can restart your swimming lessons at MonLife.

If you have any bookings with us then please bear with us as we will be in touch with you, however if your query is urgent then please call the relevant Leisure Centre

Your health and wellbeing is very important to us and we have been exploring opportunities for you to carry on with your wellbeing journey at home. We have created a MonLife YouTube channel click here where we will be regularly posting videos. As well as this click the following link and you can have free access to World Class Les Mills https://watch.lesmillsondemand.com/at-home-workouts

As a valued customer we would like to thank you for your continued support, we will be dealing with a high volume of calls please bear with us. For further updates please follow is on social media or visit www.MonLife.co.uk

We look forward to welcoming you all back soon


Coronavirus MonLife Customer Update 18/03/2020

Please be advised that as of tomorrow 19th March 2020 all Monmouthshire Museums will be temporarily closed. The grounds of Abergavenny Castle will remain open for you to use and enjoy but please follow the advice from Public Health Wales.

The Country Park only at Caldicot Castle and the Old Station Tintern walk will be accessible to public.

The Guided Walks programme has also been cancelled until further notice including the walk this Sunday 22nd March from Wern Y Cwm Forestry Car Park.

Also following Public Health Wales measures all NERS Programmes have been suspended, all customers that are currently part of this scheme have been notified.

The DofE Programme has also been cancelled until further notice.

Further updates will be given as and when we receive them. We would like to thank you for your support and apologise for any convenience caused but our priority is our customer and staff safety.


Coronavirus update for MonLife Leisure Centre customers

As most of you will be aware yesterday the UK Government announced a social distancing policy, however, they did not announce closure of public buildings.

All of our MonLife Leisure Centres are currently open and operating as normal. We are aware of how important it is to protect our customers and staff, therefore we have increased measures across our sites with enhanced cleaning procedures and we ask that all of our customers follow the advice and guidelines from Public Health Wales. If you are experiencing any of the symptoms then please stay at home and refrain from attending our facilities.

The current advice from UK Active is that being active is an important part of staying healthy and protecting against the risk of Coronavirus. Therefore until the UK Government tells us otherwise, we want to continue to play an important role in keeping our MonLife members fit and active.

We are obviously assessing this on an hour by hour basis and will take a lead from the UK Government as to next steps.

We want to thank you for your continued support and for adhering to the current guidance regarding social distancing and please continue to keep an eye on social media channels for the latest information.

If you are looking for further information then please visit https://www.monmouthshire.gov.uk/services/planning-for-emergencies/coronavirus/


Ash Dieback At Old Station Tintern

Old Station Tintern is currently undertaking some important work to help ensure we protect our special environment for our future generations to enjoy

What’s going on?

Much of our mixed woodland is made up of what is known as Fraxinus excelsio, or as we more commonly call them…..ash trees.

Recently we have noticed that a lot of our trees have succumbed to what is known as ash die back, an aggressive tree disease that is spreading quickly throughout Europe and the UK.

So what does ash die back look like and what is the problem with it?

Trees with ash die back are quite easy to spot. Some of the tell tale signs are a thinning out or dying-back of the branches at the top of the tree.

Once ash trees have reached this stage, unfortunately they cannot be saved, and as they deteriorate, there is a high likelihood that the tree will collapse.

This would be a huge risk to us as members of the public so we need to make sure we can keep our lovely site open by keeping it safe and enjoyable for all.

What are we doing about controlling ash die-back?

We are currently in the process of a removal and replanting programme. All the affected trees are in the process of being replaced by replanting two trees for every one that has died.

The new trees we are planting are of a mixed variety native to the UK which will positively benefit our local environment, help towards countering climate change and contribute to biodiversity in our local habitats.

By managing this problem we are not only preventing the spread of the disease to other areas, but we are also countering climate change and making our Old Station safe for everyone to enjoy now and in the future.

Ash dieback, also known as Chalara dieback of ash, is a fungal disease that affects all species of ash trees (Fraxinus). The disease has spread west across the country and is now affecting almost all parts of Wales.

The fungus (Hymenoscyphus fraxineus) attaches itself to the leaves of ash trees and spreads through to the branches. Ash dieback is a Europe-wide problem and 90% of ash trees are expected to die from it.

Some rural councils in England think as many as 500,000 ash trees on their land have been affected by ash dieback. In Monnmouthshire, to manage the risk from trees infected by Ash Die Back we are starting a programme of ash tree inspection and felling to achieve this that will take a number of years to complete. But by acting now we’ll be able to protect people and property from a disease that can’t be ignored.

How are ash trees affected by the disease?

The disease affects ash trees by blocking the water transport systems, causing leaf loss, lesions in the wood and on the bark. This leads to the dieback of the crown of the tree.

Trees affected become brittle over time and branches can break away from the main body of the tree. Trees affected can also be prone to secondary infection increasing the likelihood of them falling. If they are not dealt with, trees are at risk of collapsing, presenting an immediate danger to the surrounding area.

How we are tackling ash dieback

There is no known cure or practical way to prevent the disease from spreading. It is estimated that around 90% of ash trees in the UK will be killed by ash dieback.

There are thousands of ash trees on public land and many more on private land throughout the country.

We will only be dealing with trees on Authority owned public land – parks, housing estates, schools, on roadsides etc.

Surveys are ongoing to identify ash trees that require urgent felling. The surveys will take many months to complete and then we will be regular re- until the disease has run its course.

Over the next few years, ash trees on public land will be assessed to establish how the disease has affected them to help us improve our response to the disease

Ash trees are very important for their ecological value. Ash trees that show good levels of resistance to the disease should not be considered for removal as they as they may help repopulate the species in the future.

What happens if you don’t do this?

There will be several thousand large dangerous trees standing and potentially falling close to roads, schools, properties and public spaces.

How quickly does it spread from tree to tree?

The disease is caused by airborne fungal spores and can easily spread more than 20km per year. The spread from tree to tree depends more on the natural resistance of the particular tree as the spores are released in the billions and are literally everywhere.

How long will it take to deal with affected trees?

We don’t yet know how many trees will be badly affected or when they will become affected and how long it will take for trees that become affected to become a danger and require work. Evidence shows that trees decline by 10 to 20 percent each year depending on several environmental factors. Our monitoring programme will help us get a better understanding of the problem .

Is the council using this an excuse to get rid of more trees?

No, the council have committed to increasing the number of trees on public land as part of the response to climate change. This disease is highly regrettable and a disaster for the natural environment. The loss of so many trees and the ecosystems they support cannot be underestimated.

Are you going to cut down other species of trees?

Not due to ash dieback. The County Council will only remove trees if they have been assessed as unsafe to leave standing, are damaging built infrastructure or causing a hazard to the highway and there are no other practical solutions. Trees may also be removed certain special circumstances for example, to manage succession in planned landscapes.

Are you cutting down ash trees that don’t need cutting down?

Definitely not. We want to retain ash trees to see if any recover from the disease as these will provide an important seed resource for re planting Ash trees. All trees felled will be assessed prior to any work and retained for as long as safety permits.

Are some ash trees going to be resistant to the disease and how will we protect them?

There are some ash trees that appear to be resistant or highly resistant to the disease. These trees are incredibly important for the ecological value they retain in the landscape. We will continue to monitor the decline or resistance of all the retained trees over a number of years. All trees showing good resistance will be noted and departmental owners of those trees will be notified.

Are you going to replace what is lost?

We will replant trees where possible and the Council has a commitment to a new tree planting target as part of its Climate Emergency Strategy

What happens to all the wood?

Wood from tree work usually goes to contractors for processing into firewood. Some of the chipped wood goes for biomass where it is economical to do so.



Monmouth Leisure Centre membership update

Following on from the flooding incident that took place at Monmouth Leisure Centre please be advised that as the centre was closed from the 16th – 27th February we will be issuing you with a reduction in next month’s direct debit as a proportion of time lost. The swimming pool still remains closed but we are hopeful that it will reopen on Monday 16th March. As per the list below this will be the amount taken on your next Direct Debit

Aqua Adult – £0
Aqua Junior – £0
Aqua Senior – £0
Corporate – £17.11
Committed Adult – £19.76
Committed Senior – £14.75
FIT 4 Life – £9.44
FIT Adult – £23.01
FIT Junior – £9.44
FIT Senior – £17.11
Passport to Leisure – £11.50
MCC Staff – £13.90
Toning DD – £14.75

If you currently have an Annual Membership with MonLife then we will add 12 days on the end of the year.

We would like to thank you all for your support and if you have any further questions then please call the membership team on 01633 644499

Thank you



Flooding Updates

New Update: 16:40 09/03/20

Monmouth Leisure Centre Update

Gym: Open
Spin Studio: Open
Toning Suite: Open
Aerobics Studio: Open
Play Centre: Open
Spa: Open
Cafe: Open
Pool: Our pool specialists are back on site and refitting the pool circulation pumps. This will now enable us to fill the final part of the pool up a little quicker, start chemical treatment of the water and heating it. We anticipate the pool being back open on Monday 16th March. If this changes at all we will keep you all posted.
Squash: We’ve had confirmation that the new floor to the squash courts will be laid, week commencing 16th March and will take roughly 4 days to complete.


It’s nearly time to welcome you all back. The team are excited and we’re looking forward to seeing everyone.

We are hoping to reopen the Spa on Monday evening and will confirmed this on Monday morning.

The play centre should be back open for Saturday 7th March. Further updates to follow during next week.

We are slightly behind on the pool as the pumps are still not back. Therefore, refilling is taking longer than expected. Further updates to follow next week.

Have a great weekend and thank you once again for you continued support


Update Monmouth Leisure Centre 27/02/2020

Staff are excited to be reopening the first floor of the centre and reception on Friday 28th February as planned. Cleaning has continued throughout the building with a number of areas signed off and locked ready for reopening when required.

The filling of the pool continues, this takes a little longer than your paddling pool in the garden – around 3-4 days!

Carpet on the ground floor has been re-laid and staff are eagerly setting up the reception area ready to serve.

Our squash court specialists have inspected the courts and confirmed that other than the floor there is no further damaged. We are awaiting confirmation for the new floor to be laid.

Who’s coming to see us tomorrow night?


Monmouth Leisure Centre Update 26/02/2020

As stated in the previous update we will be opening the first floor this Friday at 5pm.  This includes access to the gym, toning suite, spin studio and aerobics studio with all classes being back to normal.

We are working with contractors on the play area and swimming pool and will update you as soon as we have more information.  The Spa will be open next week and will update you on this over the next few days.  The Beauty room will be back open from Wednesday next week for treatments.

Thank you for your support


Staff and contractors have continued to work hard over the past few days to ensure that the centre reopens as soon as possible.

We are pleased to announce that the first floor which includes the gym, toning suite, class studio and spin studio will reopen on Friday 28th February from 5pm with classes running as normal.

The sports hall remains open as normal in the evenings.

The play centre, squash courts spa and swimming pool will remain closed. We have a number of contractors due out over the next few days and following these visits we hope to have some further updates.

Thank you once again for your patience.


Staff have been working tirelessly over the weekend to get Monmouth Leisure Centre open as soon as possible, we have contractors on site this week and will hopefully get a more detailed update tomorrow on timescales for the first floor area being accessed.  The swimming pool, squash courts and soft play area will take longer and we will endeavour to update you on this progress as soon as we have more information.  Again thank you for your support and patience at this time.


The water levels have now dropped and we have been able to assess the full building which has resulted in damage to the fixtures and fittings.

We are currently in the process of meeting with suppliers, drying the building, disposing of items lost, arranging replacements and initiating deep cleaning throughout.

Our first priority is to get safe access to the first floor (Gym, toning, spin and studio) so that our members can access these unaffected areas. To ensure the safety of our customers and staff we will be replacing the flooring in the corridor and reception area and carrying out a thorough deep clean.

The swimming pool, spa, squash courts, beauty rooms and play centre will remain closed and we will provide a further update on this next week.

The sports hall will be open as normal from Monday night and staff will be on hand to deal with those bookings at the sports hall.

During this difficult time we would like to thank our staff who have not only assisted with the Emergency Rest Centre at Shire Hall but many have also been sent across the county to other facilities to work from at short notice.

We also would like to thank all our users for their kind comments of support and patience during this challenging time.


Please be advised that due to flood water still covering the ground floor Monmouth Leisure Centre remains closed. 

We will endeavour to re-open your Leisure Centre as soon as it is safe to do so but at the moment until the water has cleared we are unable to assess the damage and therefore unable to give a specific date.

We would also like to remind you that you can access the other 3 MonLife Leisure Centres at Chepstow, Caldicot and Abergavenny.  For further information on these facilities visit www.monlife.co.uk

Please follow our Monmouth Leisure Centre facebook pages for regular updates.

We apologise for any inconvenience caused and thank you for your patience and support at this time.


Update: 21:45 pm 18/02/20

Please note, Monmouth Leisure Centre will remain closed until further notice. The water levels have increased around the site throughout the day and the Centre will not open tomorrow. A site assessment will be carried out in the morning. Please follow our Facebook pages for regular updates.

Update: 08:30 am 18/02/20

Please note, the leisure centre in Monmouth will remain closed until further notice. Please advise customers not to attempt to drive down to the centre due to the large volumes of water. 

Update: 13:30 pm 17/02/20

The centre will be closing at 2:30 pm following advice from National Resource Wales regarding a tidal surge coming down the Wye later today.

We are cancelling fitness classes for Tuesday morning and the Monmouthshire Games. An update on the rest of the centre will be posted through our social media channels tomorrow at 8:00 am.

Update: 13:13 pm 17/02/20

Please note, we have opened the gym and toning suite. The play centre and pool currently remain closed with a decision made at approx. 2:00 pm. Whilst the building is fine the drains around the site continue to struggle. Therefore, we are trying to minimise any further pressure on them.