Waste service strike

The waste service strike is now over and we have restarted service from 27 September 2023.

Over the next few weeks, our waste service team and private waste contractors will catch up on missed collections and street cleaning as quickly as possible.

We thank everyone for their patience and apologise for the inconvenience

Find out more

Insourcing the council's leisure service

In August 2022, Cabinet approved plans to bring the management of seven leisure centres in-house when the current contract with leisure provider GLL expires in April 2024.

The seven leisure centres are:

Insourcing the service presents an exciting opportunity to create facilities and a programme of activity that meets the needs and health and wellbeing of our residents. 

We will focus on

  • increasing participation of our residents with a focus on women and girls
  • making our services more inclusive and easier to access
  • supporting residents' journeys to a healthier lifestyle

St George’s

As part of the council’s investment in leisure, plans for a new leisure centre on the St George’s site are also underway. The scheme, set to be completed in 2026, will provide more and better quality facilities for residents.

This along with new housing will contribute to the Mayor’s target of providing 1,000 social homes a year across the borough.

Find out more about St George's.

Have your say

There will be opportunities for residents to share their experiences, thoughts and ideas to help shape the future of the council’s leisure, health and wellbeing service.

Brand engagement survey

Initially, as part of understanding what the local community would like to see as part of the future of a leisure, health and wellbeing brand, we would like to hear from people who currently use/have used the centres, as well as people who don’t but might consider doing so in the future.

Complete the survey



As well as the survey, we will be hosting more detailed focus group sessions. Please register your interest via the survey. Attendees will be chosen at random and will receive a £20 Amazon voucher.

Future opportunities

Future opportunities will be listed on this page, on the Let’s Talk Tower Hamlets consultation website and included in the resident newsletter.

If you have any comments or questions, please email leisureservice@towerhamlets.gov.uk.

Frequently asked questions

Are all the leisure centres in Tower Hamlets currently run by GLL/Better transferring back to the council?

Yes. The six leisure centres that are currently open (John Orwell, Mile End, Poplar Baths, Tiller, Whitechapel and York Hall) will be run directly by the council from 1 May 2024. St George’s is being rebuilt.

What does this mean for the leisure centres?

All the leisure centres that are currently open will remain so after the transfer. All staff operating the facilities will be employed by the council, which will run each leisure centre directly. A new management team is being recruited to oversee the leisure service. 

What does this mean for the staff who currently work at these venues?

Staff who are employed by GLL and who are eligible to transfer to the council after 30 April 2024 will become council employees.

What will happen between now and 30 April 2024?

The council is recruiting the management team that will oversee the day-to-day operation of the leisure centres. There will be a number of opportunities for local people share their views about the new service.

Will there be job opportunities for local people?

As we start to recruit for the new service, we will advertise those opportunities on the council website and Workpath, and welcome applications from local residents. We are also keen to ensure there are range of apprenticeships on offer too.

Will the prices stay the same?

We are reviewing the prices as part of this project and welcome views from local residents on what is affordable and what services you value most.

Will I be able to access any leisure centre in Tower Hamlets with my new membership?

The plan is to make sure that there will be memberships that allow you to use any of the transferring council centres.