Fitness fanatic Wilf, 91, handed free leisure club membership

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They say if you don’t ask, then you won’t get – and that was exactly the case for one Go Active leisure centre user who has received a free honorary membership at Selwyn Jones Sports Centre.

91-year-old Wilfred Potter regularly visits Selwyn Jones in Ashton Road, Newton-le-Willows, twice a week where – despite sometimes needing assistance – he manages to swim 16 lengths of the centre’s swimming pool.

Having been a member for just over seven years, Mr Potter, who spends his leisure time in Newton-le-Willows, went down to renew his membership in April and asked on the off chance if there were any special offers for

senior citizens in his age category.

Although there was nothing in place at the time of asking, Wilf’s enquiry certainly got leisure centre staff thinking – which has led to the introduction of free honorary memberships for residents aged 90 and over.

Mr Potter was invited down to Selwyn Jones on Friday 14 July, where councillors Sue Murphy and Gill Neal were on hand to present him with his membership.

After presenting Wilf with his honorary membership, Coun Sue Murphy, cabinet member for Leisure Services, said: “First of all I’d like to thank Wilf for his fantastic suggestion which I’m delighted to see has come to fruition.

“Not everyone Wilf’s age has the independence to go out and enjoy some leisure time, but if there are people out there - we should absolutely encourage them to get out of the house to come and meet and talk to other

people, while getting fit and active at the same time."

Coun Neal, St Helens Council’s Cabinet Member for Public Health and Wellbeing, added: "Wilf is an inspiration and I take my hat off to him for his enthusiasm for exercise at the age of 91.

“Exercise is obviously one of the key components to living a healthy lifestyle and Wilf is a wonderful example that you shouldn’t allow your age to get in the way of keeping active.”

Any borough residents interested in becoming an 'honorary member’ can visit their local Go Active centre for more details or call 01744 671720/671726.