Bisham Abbey, A World Class Sports Centre

Bisham Abbey located just 35 minutes from Heathrow Airport is one of the best national sports centers in the UK. Once upon a time, it was the home of nobles like Elizabeth the I and Henry the VIII. So, not only does the place offer out of this world sports facilities, it is also rich with history of over 800 years. Bisham Abbey sits between Buckinghamshire and Berkshire.

There are several reasons why Bisham Abbey qualifies to be a National Sports Center. One of these reasons is the facilities on site.

  • 50 en-suite rooms that provide accommodation for athletes on the grounds. Each room is equipped with a flat screen TV, a coffee or tea making machine, a desk and a shower cubicle.
  • Abbey clinic. This sports therapy center provides medical assistance for athletes.
  • 9 hole golf course.
  • 4 Indoor tennis courts.
  • 2 squash tennis courts.
  • 2 water based astro turfs and training D’s.
  • International synthetic pitch for hockey.
  • 3 grass pitches for football and rugby. All up to FA standards.
  • 4 Outdoor clay tennis courts.
  • 90 station fitness suite.
  • Steam bath.
  • Sauna.
  • A gym which is also open to the community. Programs offered include a full fitness timetable, cardio and weights.
  • Dance studio.
  • 7 conference rooms.
  • Both indoor and outdoor changing rooms.
  • A conditioning and elite strength facility.
  • Bar and outdoor terrace. This is mostly used for barbeques and marquee events.
  • The Engine Room Restaurant.
  • Refuel café.
  • The Warwick room utilised for civil ceremonies.
  • The Great Hall. It is often rented for wedding receptions.
  • Riverside lawn. Companies, schools, and organizations use this lawn for fun days and team building exercises.
  • Bisham Abbey Sailing and Navigation School.

This prestigious center is managed by Sport England who hired Servo Leisure Operating Limited to run it. Sports played in the center include football, wheelchair tennis, lawn tennis, hockey, and rugby.

Crystal Palace National Sports Center

Crystal Palace National Sports Centre found in the UK was opened in 1964. It is a sports centre and better yet a leisure centre with activities that are suitable for everyone. It is located on Ledrington Road, a short walk from Crystal Palace mainline station. The sports center occupies 200 acres of land in South London.

Crystal Palace sports center has a wide range of facilities like the modern gym which is loved by people from the local community. The gym offers services at low costs. It has a 50 m Olympic size swimming pool. This swimming pool has been used by swimmers during the Olympics and parents taking their children there for recreation during their holidays alike. If you are not a swimmer or a fan of the gym then you should not worry since there are a lot of other excellent services offered. There are pitches where you can play badminton, courts, stadium and athletic tracks which have been used by world famous athletes such as Usain Bolt. It has studios, climbing walls, driving boards and a squash court. It is the equivalent of Euro Unibet, where you can find all the information you’re looking for regarding the Euros. Just like Crystal Palace Sports Center, it has everything.

The sports centre is a very attractive place and it was built in a way that conveniences people with disabilities. It is adaptable for wheelchairs and has toilets suitable for the disabled. It ensures that all customers are comfortable. Crystal Palace National Sports Center offers parking services, poolside facilities for sunbathing and a lift so that people can save on energy while climbing the stairs. It has nice, fancy and cozy changing rooms and a brand new café where one can relax after the exercises and take a drink or coffee to keep warm.

The sports centre has opening hours too. On Mondays to Friday, it opens at 0600hrs and closes at 2200hrs. During the weekends, it opens at 0830hrs and closes at 1700hrs.

Lilleshall National Sports Center

For a sports center to be considered a national sports center, several qualifications ought to be met. The center has to offer world class accommodation, top notch equipment and state of the art facilities. Lilleshall National Sports Center has proven to be a major contender when it comes to national sports centers in the UK.

The center is located between Newport and Telford and covers a whopping 10 acres. Initially, it was a family retreat center for the Duke of Sutherland. That explains the halls and ballrooms which have since then been refurbished to sports facilities. The Ford Hall, for example, was once a ballroom but is now a martial arts and lawn tennis court. The estate turned gym and dance studio turned sporting facility has a lot to offer to England’s established and upcoming high profile sports persons.

Accommodation is provided for with the many en-suite, single and twin rooms. Being of the national caliber that it is, the rooms come with a TV, WiFi, a workspace and tea and coffee making machines. There is a self-service restaurant with elite chefs who aim to provide athletes with balanced meals that are at par with their activity level. A bar is also present thus facilitating casual interactions among guests. There are 5 squash courts, a cricket field, and an archery range. The center is the home of British Gymnastics. Lilleshall National Sports Center has two pitches, both water based, floodlit and with artificial grass. One is for hockey and the other a multi-sport pitch. It is also endowed with a Sports Medicine Institute and Rehab Center and a 6 lane flat green indoor bowling alley.

The center’s serene environment makes it suitable ground for events, team building, weddings, and conferences. Sports played on the grounds include lacrosse, archery, golf, netball, football, hockey, rugby, lawn tennis, badminton, and cricket.

Plas Y Brenin

Plas Y Brenin is Welsh and translates to the king’s place. It’s naming was to pay homage to King George the VI who bought the land. Plas Y Brenin is the national mountain sports center in the United Kingdom. Unlike most sports centers, Plas Y Brenin does not offer your typical everyday sports but you know what they say, it better to be someone’s shot of whiskey than everyone’s cup of coffee. It is a haven for people who love adventure, a little danger and the great outdoors.

Most people go to Plas Y Brenin to participate in kayaking, alpine mountaineering’s, hill walking, scrambling, mountaineerings, skiing, road cycling, mountain biking, climbing and canoe training.

The facilities on the ground are unrivaled to none. There is a well-equipped gym or fitness center open to all visitors. Inside is a 6*3m heated rolling pool for canoe training. This particular pool has facilities for video analysis in order to gauge and help the trainees. The place has six lecture rooms, a conference room and a big function room. Mountain bikers are treated to a full on purpose built skill course. Also available is a pump track, work stations for bike repair, facilities for bike washing and proper and secure storage.

Paddlers have a go at the latest kayaks, canoes and sea kayaks in the market. Plas Y Brenin has an equipment store on site which is free! Yes, you heard that right. Free. Visitors can use equipment from the store free of charge during their stay. There is a 13-meter climbing wall with an auto belay system in addition to a training wall. There is a bar that is well stocked with locally brewed Brenin Ales, a variety of wines, soft drinks, and spirits. The dining experience is first class with delicious local meals made by chief chefs who are also passionate about the outdoors.

Coaches are very professional and take the time to understand an individual’s expectation and ability. They do challenge you but keep it safe and fun. Accommodation ranges from classy en-suite rooms, 2 cottages and a farmhouse.

The National Water Sports Centre

While some people love safe sports like football, others live for sports that get adrenaline pumping through their veins. The National Water Sports Centre is one institute that caters for adrenaline junkies and adventure lovers. It sits on the 10 acre Holme Pierrepont Country Park in Nottingham, UK. The National Water Sports Centre is managed by Nottinghamshire County Council which hired Serco Operations Limited to run it.

The centre provides both water based and land based activities. National Water Sports Centre is located on a beautiful location with views of the 2 km Regatta Lake and wildlife living in the park. Much like all national sports centres, it has a gym. Matter of fact, two fully equipped gymnasiums with treadmills, squat racks, lifting platforms, power plates, free weights, virtual training bikes and many others. One is an elite strength and conditioning gym, and the other a 60 station life fitness gym. The latter has glass walls that enable gym members to experience beautiful views of the lake while working on their fitness. There is no crowding or congestion in the gym.

There is a 700 m white water canoe course, a 6 lane rowing course, four conference rooms, fitness classes, nature trails, lagoons, a restaurant, and the Lakeside café that serves hot and cold food from 7:00 a.m to 2:00 p.m. Accommodation is provided for within the grounds. Several options are available. First, there is a cottage that houses 11 called The Elms. Second are the 54 fabulous lakeside en-suite rooms. The third and fourth options are for campers. The 18 acre campsite facilitates campers to put up tents and vans. The staff on the other hand provide warm, cosy wooden huts (camping arches) and 5 Tipis for campers who love the glamorous things in life. These Tipis have electricity and four beds.

Activities offered include white water rafting, white water tubing, wakeboarding, kayaking, canoeing, stand-up paddle boarding, foot golf, lagoon wipeout, e-combat laser tag, sky trail, segways, wall climbing, white water duckying, and the list goes on.

Facilities Available At National Sports Centres In The UK

Sports centres aspiring to have the title ‘national’ added to their names have quite a lot to work on. National sports centres in the United Kingdom, that is Bisham Abbey, Lilleshall and Plas Y Brenin have set the bar really high. These centres provide world class services right from the sports facilities presence, their catering and their accommodation.

5 Star Accommodation

National sports centres in the United Kingdom strive to provide only the best to sportsmen and women from England and all over the world. We are talking classy en-suite rooms, cosy cottages, fancy farmhouses, comfortable, safe and adequate camping sites with camping arches, tipis and tents. There is everything for everyone. All rooms are self contained saving athletes, coaches and guests from the hassle of going more than 10metres for a shower or to answer the call of nature. A flat screen TV is a device that will never lack in a room within a national sports centre. Coffee and tea making machines are also very popular apparatus. Needless to say, all rooms in a national sports centre have a WiFi connection and a workspace. The en-suite rooms come with beds and interior decor that is to die for.

World Class Catering

A delicious gourmet meal is the least a national sports centre can provide since fine wining and dining is not too much to ask for the crème de la crème. The bars at such centres are always fully stocked with a variety of soft drinks, beers, wines and spirits.

State Of The Art Facilities

Sporting facilities ought to be the best. Fancy courts, the latest equipment, and pitches in good state are a national sports centre must have. All sports centers of the national caliber also have a fully equipped gymnasium or two. Players are known to unwind at on-ground saunas or over drinks at the bar. Medical centres that provide on site treatment or first aid to sports persons are also common features.

Importance Of National Sports In The UK

The government of England has commited itself 100% to the advancement of sports. Every single year, the Treasury and The National Lottery set aside bllions for this very purpose. Hundreds of national governing bodies and sports organizations have been established to facilitate sports in the UK. These include Sport England, Sport Scotland, Mountain Training Trust, British Canoe Union, UK Sport, England Hockey, UK Athletics, Great Britain Rowing, British Olympics Association, British Swimming, WIN Tennis , Badminton Association of England, Sport Wales, Rugby Football League and Baseball Softball UK. National Sports Centres are open not just to established athletes but also to the local community. They host summer camps and inter-school competitions. For such effort to be put into sports begs the question, what are the benefits of sports?

Importance of sports

  • Improves physical health of people engaging in sports or activities by improving circulation of blood, reducing obesity, facilitating proper heart function and lowering the risks of diabetes, hypertension and cancer among many other diseases.
  • Improves mental health of individuals. Physical activity and working out releases endorphins that puts people in good moods. It reduces stress levels. It minimizes the chances of having anxiety or depression. It boosts self esteem. It lowers risks of being affected by dementia.
  • Reduces crime. Sports centres at the grassroot levels ensure the youth are kept busy and constructive. They are therefore less likely to partake in crime.
  • Source of income. Sports pay and they pay well. Top sportsmen and women are known to have fat bank accounts. This income is used to better the lives of the players and the people around them. Some also goes back to the government.
  • National sports centres host major events like the Olympics which raises revenue for the UK government. Athletes from other countries pay to use their facilities, wine and dine in the country and to travel to nearby tourist attractions.
  • Promotes unity and fondness. People from different backgrounds interact and eventually develop strong bonds. Family members and fans go out to cheer favorite athletes and this promotes love and unity.

Sports Betting In The UK

Forget about blackjack, baccarat and roulette, sports betting is the new form of gambling that is taking the world by storm. It involves individuals predicting the results of a sport and placing wagers on the eventual outcome.

Sports betting can either be legal or illegal. Illegal sports betting is run by private individuals or enterprises called bookies. Legal sports betting is run by companies that have licenses called sportsbooks. Most of these sportsbooks also known as bookmakers, carry out their operations online. Sports betting is done on popular athletic, non athletic, and virtual sports such as horse racing, auto racing, snooker, hockey, pool, football, cricket, boxing, cycling, basketball, golf, tennis, baseball, rugby, Aussie rules football, bowling, and American football.

Bettors usually have an account with a bookmaker of their choice. They deposit cash before placing bets. Placing of bets is guided by odds provided by most of the bookmakers or sports analysts.   Odds are the ratio of the amount of money a bettor is supposed to win compared to the stake. Most UK formats for odds are in fractions. They can, however, be in decimals.’ Odds on’ mean there is a high possibility of an event happening compared to the odds, while ‘odds against’ means the likelihood of the event happening is minimal. If the individual wins, the cash is sent to their account. Payout time is different for different bookmakers. Withdrawal options include Usemybank, Echeck, Entropay, NETeller, debit/credit cards, Skrill, InstaDebit, DBT, Ukash and Click2Pay.

Since there are so many options to pick from when it comes to sports books, bettors look for attractive features such as offers and bonuses, high odds, security, ease of cash withdrawal, and a variety of sports to bet on. The most popular sports books in the UK are William Hill, Coral, Skybet, Unibet, Sport Pesa, Pinnacle, Mr Green, Betway, BETVICTOR, Paddy Power, Ladbrokes, BetFred, and Tipico. Some of these bookmakers go on to sponsor major teams like BetWay with West Ham United.