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Monday 18 June 2018
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13 Dec 2017
Drayson celebrates rise from school drop-out to UK fitness industry's Outstanding Individual of 2017

Danny Drayson has been on a journey from school drop-out to fitness and young person development ambassador at Life Leisure – and has now landed Active Training Awards' Outstanding Individual of the Year title along the way.

The father-of-two, who collected his award earlier this month, joined Life Leisure’s Motivator Scheme in 2011, initially working as a volunteer before qualifying to receive certified training in fitness instruction.

Having climbed the ladder to his current post as senior fitness coach at Life Leisure Grand Central in Stockport, Greater Manchester, Drayson is set to start his new ambassadorial role for the organisation in January, where he will be responsible for developing young people entering the sector.

Speaking to Leisure Opportunities on his award, Drayson said: “It was the biggest shock – I didn't think I was going to win. This type of thing doesn't happen to people like me, it was surreal.

“Life Leisure has never been judgemental but at school it was different – I was judged and people still might be getting judged. I'm living proof you can start with nothing and get to a good place.”

The operator, which runs 12 leisure and sports centres, also won Medium Employer of the Year at the awards, held at Reading Hilton in Berkshire.

Life Leisure chief executive Malcolm McPhail said: “This has to be one of my proudest moments: to see Danny win a national individual award and be recognised by his peers is absolutely amazing.”

More than 250 thought-leaders from the physical activity sector attended ukactive's Active Training Awards this month to celebrate successful workforce development throughout the industry.

For a second year running, Future Fit Training won Training Provider of the Year. Managing director Rob Johnson told Leisure Opportunities: “I'm absolutely delighted – we've consistently tried to drive up standards and we've proven you can deliver high-quality training over a long period of time.

"We're producing personal trainers, pilates teachers and nutrition advisors who can forge a career in the industry. We're giving people the right tools to do the job.”

Elsewhere, Active Tameside won the Outstanding Achievement award for overcoming significant organisational challenges through effective strategy, staff development and leadership.

Charitable social enterprise GLL scooped the Apprenticeship Provider of the Year gong. GLL’s apprenticeship scheme develops people at its Better leisure centres and GLL College – with 92 per cent of apprentices remaining in permanent employment at the organisation.

1610, which employs 450 people at 19 leisure centres in the South West, won the Transformational Leadership award after restructuring to meet challenges of reduced public funding and the impact of the increased national living wage.

Other winners included: York Sport (Small Employer of the Year); Virgin Active (Large Employer of the Year); Premier Global NASM (Best Innovation); CanRehab (Specialist Training Programme of the Year); and Oomph! Wellness (Outstanding Achievement).

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14 Jun 2018
Looking forward as London prepares for MuseumNext
Museum delegates will soon gather in London for the European edition of this year's MuseumNext conference, which kicks off on Monday (18 June) for its 10th year.
14 Jun 2018
Luzhniki Stadium reopens to host opening game of FIFA World Cup
The 21st edition of the FIFA World Cup will kick off later today, marking the re-opening of what has been described as the "most high-tech stadium in World Cup history".
14 Jun 2018
Wellness Meets Fashion: GWS to feature runway show
The confluence of fashion and wellness will be explored during the first-ever Wellness Meets Fashion show, which will take place at the Global Wellness Summit’s (GWS) gala event on 7 October, 2018 in Cesena, Italy.
13 Jun 2018
Breaking: US, Canada and Mexico to host FIFA 2026 World Cup
A joint bid with the US, Mexico and Canada has been selected to host the FIFA 2026 World Cup, following a vote by the FIFA Congress today.
12 Jun 2018
Manchester City FC opens its facilities to kids during Active Uprising
Premier League club Manchester City FC (MCFC) will open its doors to children later this month, as part of the Active Uprising Weekend organised by ukactive.
12 Jun 2018
GOCO’s D’Angelo wins Black Diamond Award
The 11th annual Forum Hotel & Spa conference took place last week at the Four Seasons George V in Paris, bringing together spa and hospitality executives from France, Italy, Switzerland, Germany, Austria, the Netherlands, Morocco, Portugal, Russia, Luxembourg, Great Britain and the US.
11 Jun 2018
Michelle Obama to keynote at Mindbody's BOLD Conference
Former First Lady, Michelle Obama, will give a keynote speech at this year's BOLD conference.
04 Jun 2018
Andy Burnham announced as Active Uprising headline speaker
Former health secretary and current Manchester mayor Andy Burnham has been confirmed as the headline speaker at this year's Active Uprising event.
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Diary dates
24 Apr - 26 Nov 2018
MAPIC Russia
18-19 Jun 2018
Sports & Leisure Forum
Radisson Blu Hotel, London Stansted
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18-19 Jun 2018
Spa Life International (Ireland)
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MuseumNext Europe
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MIPIM PropTech Europe
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Mövenpick Hotel Mansour Eddahbi
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Active Uprising
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International Esthetics, Cosmetics & Spa Conference Las Vegas
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HOTEC Design
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Major Events Summit
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London Venues Summit
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Facilities Management Forum
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International Game and Amusement Fair (GAF)
Wuhan International Expo Center
18 Jul 2018
Hotel Designs Meet Up
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