Royal visit to flagship facility 

The Princess Royal

The Princess Royal has officially opened the £30m flagship health, leisure and research centre, Bolton One.

Princess Anne visited Bolton on Tuesday April 23 to unveil a commemorative plaque at the iconic facility.

Bolton One is a £30.6 million health, leisure and research centre, built through a unique and visionary partnership between Bolton Council, NHS Bolton and the University of Bolton. The building represents three partners coming together to provide a fantastic asset for the local community.

On arrival at the centre, the Princess Royal was met by the Lord Lieutenant of Greater Manchester, Warren J Smith and introduced to local dignitaries including the Mayor and Mayoress of Bolton, as well as viewing the stunning 25m swimming pool.

The Princess Royal then visited the NHS area and met NHS staff instrumental in setting up Bolton One, and staff from Eric Wright Partnerships who built the flagship centre in collaboration with the NHS, Bolton Council and Bolton University. She then visited the biomechanics laboratory and physiotherapy clinics where she spoke to staff and patients.

The Princess Royal then met Olympic gold medallist Jason Kenny. Jason showed the Princess Royal, the ‘Hall of Fame’ which is an area dedicated to his achievements with photographs of Jason from his early years on a bicycle up to his recent double Gold Olympic medal wins. He then escorted her to the gym where Paralympian Tony Griffin demonstrated the training equipment and to the studio where European Junior Gold Medallist Matthew Rotherham was taking part in a spin class.

The Princess Royal then visited the University of Bolton’s Athlete Development Centre where she viewed a number of demonstrations by senior lecturing staff in Biomechanics, Clinical Simulation, Physiology and Sports Pre/Rehabilitation.

She also met ‘friends of the University’ who included the former BWFC player and Honorary Doctor of the University, Fabrice Muamba. Fabrice took part in a demonstration of heart resuscitation within the Athlete Development Centre.

Finally, the Mayor of Bolton invited the Princess Royal to unveil a plaque commemorating her visit and the official opening of the centre.

Councillor Guy Harkin, Mayor of Bolton said: “We are delighted and proud that the Princess has honoured Bolton with a visit. We hope that she enjoyed her trip to this inspiring and unique building, which provides high quality health, leisure and research facilities to the community.”

Said Dr George Holmes, Vice Chancellor of the University of Bolton: ‘Her Royal Highness, The Princess Royal, saw an impressive collection of demonstrations that highlight the very best in the teaching, sports and clinical equipment our students enjoy within this fine facility.

It was an honour and a privilege to welcome The Princess Royal and show her how proud we are of Bolton One.’

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Jo Cooke
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