Mike Ashley-owned Guildford Sports Direct gym shuts down with less than a day’s warning

Gymgoers in Guildford were left feeling “gutted” after the Sports Direct health centre closed suddenly without warning to members just before Christmas. An email was sent out to members in the afternoon informing them that the gym would be shut for good at the end of the day, and would not be reopening.

On Monday, December 5, the gym on Epsom Road in Merrow, closed its doors for good to staff and members. Richard Morris, who attended the gym for six years, explains how staff “had no idea either” and that “they found out when we did”.

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For “their wonderful staff and many hundred loyal customers” the closure came as a surprise. He said there were “lovely, lovely staff at the centre,” adding that he does “really feel for the staff, we as customers are gutted as it’s such an important part of our lives”.

Regulars were given the option to continue their membership with Sports Direct at the Epsom gym on Ruxley Lane and were given additional access to the Ewell-Epsom gym on Banstead Road, at no extra cost.

Those who wished to cancel were advised to contact the membership team before Monday, December 19, to receive a refund of their outstanding balance. The funds should be returned before Sunday, January 1, 2023. Members renting a locker were urged to clear their belongings by Wednesday, December 7. But if they were unable to get there in time, they must reach out to the gym manager.

The Guildford branch is not the only gym to have shut at the last minute. The Hove branch shut earlier in November, giving members just a few days’ notice. Another branch at Bury St Edmunds is also facing closure. Despite a number of Sports Direct gyms closing their doors for good, business owner Mike Ashely has dodged questions about the financial state of the business after pledging to invest £600 million in the Coventry Building Society Arena stadium, which his company recently took over.

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