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First FlowRider JR Makes Debut in Gateshead

Gateshead Council – Tuesday 19th October 2010

North’s First Indoor Surfing Leisure Centre to Launch in Heworth

The first indoor surf attraction to be opened in a UK leisure centre prepares for its unveiling on Monday 15th November. Heworth Leisure Centre in Gateshead is the destination of this purpose built facility that is bringing the surf to town.

Wave Loch’s FlowRider ® Sheet Wave Attraction generates a sustained sheet of water that travels at 40 kms an hour allowing riders to have the sensation of surfing.  This machine, one of only three in the UK, and the only one in the North, allows people to surf and body board in a safe environment under the supervision of Gateshead Council’s FlowRider trained team. Gateshead Council’s cabinet member for culture Councillor Linda Green said:

“Who would have thought that you’d be able to surf in Heworth? It’s an incredible opportunity for our residents and the wider public to take up a new sport and develop new skills achieving a central aim of our active and healthy programme by making it easy for people to make improved lifestyle choices about fitness for themselves and their families.”

The multi million pound purpose built centre located on High Lanes, adjacent to Heworth Grange School, has a four lane 25 metre pool; an additional small pool and a fun pool containing water features for younger children; a gym boasting brand new equipment offering a full workout with access to 40 plus work stations; a multi-purpose studio area for aerobic, dance and other classes and changing rooms for the pool and for out door activities. Councillor Green said:

“We set out with the aim of making it easy for people at grass roots up to elite sporting level to access the very best in leisure facilities and the Heworth Leisure Centre is the latest in a long line of new build and upgrade projects to maintain Gateshead’s position as a world class sport and leisure destination.”

Those looking to be the first to have a taster session of the North’s first FlowRider will be given the chance to book a ticket, subject to availability, by contacting Gateshead Council on 0191 4335715 for the opportunity to take part in a free preview weekend on  Saturday  November   13th and Sunday 14th  November  .

Heworth’s leisure centre is the second of two purpose-built leisure centres to open as part of £36 million being invested by Gateshead Council in facilities across the borough, including some additional support for Gateshead International Stadium from other partners, including Gateshead College. The first was the Blaydon Leisure and Primary Care Centre which launched in September and is the North East’s only combined leisure and healthcare centre with a swimming pool.

The investment also funded the £8m redevelopment of Gateshead Leisure Centre, which opened earlier this year, and the redevelopment of Birtley and Dunston pools; the full programme is scheduled for completion by Spring 2011.

For all media enquiries please contact James Barton Gateshead Council communications officer on 0191 4332026 or email

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