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Public Performance Reports

Leisure and culture

The Council Plan Connect, outlines our objectives for 2012-17.  Connect ambitions and objectives should not be seen in isolation, they interact with each other and as we achieve success in one, we move closer to success in others.  In delivering our vision to ‘improve the quality of life of everyone in South Lanarkshire’ our ambitions show how our work links with our partners including our Community Planning Partners. 

Each year we produce an Annual Performance Report which details how we have performed in achieving our Connect objectives. To complement the Annual Performance Report we have created a suite of individual Public Performance Reports.  This report outlines the performance in relation to our leisure and culture services and how this links to the outcomes of our ambition to ‘Improve health, care and wellbeing' and 'Make communities safer and stronger'.

Leisure and culture

The council has an important role to play in promoting the health, wellbeing, and learning environment of the population of South Lanarkshire.  This is achieved through the provision of community learning and recreational activities within our museum, libraries and arts centres and through the promotion of healthier lifestyles via our sports and leisure centres.  These services are delivered by South Lanarkshire Leisure and Culture (SLLC) which was set up in 2010 to operate leisure and culture services on behalf of the council.

2015-16 has been a difficult year for our leisure and culture services (which covers sport and leisure, country parks, golf, outdoor recreation facilities, cultural venues, community halls, museum, the arts and libraries).  For the first time since 2013-14, the number of attendances at our SLLC facilities fell below nine million, and whilst still impressive at over eight and a half million, this represents a 5.6% decrease in annual attendances compared to the previous year.  Attendance levels across all facilities decreased.  Competition from low cost budget gyms, the closure of East Kilbride Ice Rink due to town centre refurbishments, and library customers moving from traditional services to on-line services such as e-books and e-lending, has meant less people physically coming ’through the doors’.  During 2016-17, we will work even harder at encouraging people to lead more active lives, with a central part of our marketing activities involving an increased focus on social media.

More information about SLLC, including the SLLC Annual Report, can be found via the following link SLLC - About us.

Sport and physical activity

SLLC is responsible for the operation and management of 23 indoor leisure facilities including nine swimming pools, an ice rink, and two athletics tracks. Through its development work, the service aims to increase opportunities for individuals to get engaged in physical activity.  This is achieved through working in local schools and communities, in partnership with clubs, volunteers, sports councils and national governing bodies.

There are a number of indicators collected and reported that show the extent to which our facilities are being used:

Attendance at facilities managed by the Sport and Physical Activity section of SLLC – No target set

What this means This indicator shows the attendance figures at facilities managed by the Sport and Physical Activity section of SLLC – this includes swimming pools and other indoor sports and leisure facilities.
Why this matters This indicator measures the extent to which the council is achieving its aim of encouraging everyone to participate in activities which will lead them to a healthier lifestyle and which will ultimately have a positive impact on the health outcomes of the residents and visitors of South Lanarkshire.
Our performance and how we compare Comparator 2013-14 2014-15 2015-16    Are we improving?
SLLC 3,502,533 3,336,812 3,155,799 No
Scotland N/A N/A N/A
How we have performed in improving this public service In 2015-16, annual attendances at facilities managed by the Sport and Physical Activity section of SLLC were 5.4% lower than in 2014-15. This is largely due to the continued impact (although lessening) of budget gyms, the long term closure of East Kilbride Ice Rink, and temporary closure of four gyms for refurbishment works.

 

Cost per attendance at sports facilities  – No target set

What this means This indicator calculates the cost per attendance at sports facilities and is a good measure of our efficiency in providing services.
Why this matters Attendance figures show us how much our pool and indoor leisure facilities are used.  This indicator shows us how successful we are at increasing attendances at sport facilities and the value for money achieved in doing this.
Our performance and how we compare Comparator 2013-14 2014-15 2015-16     Are we  improving?
SLLC £2.33 £2.20 £2.24 No
Scotland £3.19 £2.96 £2.99
How we have performed in improving this public service In South Lanarkshire, the cost per attendance at sports facilities is lower than the Scottish average figure.  Tight budgetary control is helping to maintain the cost of this service.  However, this measure is impacted by the number of actual attendances at sports facilities in the year - the closure of East Kilbride Ice Rink, the Lanark and Fairhill gyms for refurbishment, and the ongoing impact of budget gyms all served to reduce the number of attendances at sports facilities in 2015-16, leading to the slight increase in cost per attendance at sports facilities. 

Satisfaction with leisure facilities< /br> The Scottish Household Survey shows that the percentage of adults satisfied with leisure facilities decreased to 74% from 77.3% in the previous year, and was lower than the Scottish average of 75.7%.  However, some caution should be taken with this Scottish Household Survey data as not all people surveyed are direct users of the service, and the sample size for the survey is small.  SLLC carries out its own satisfaction survey and, unlike the Scottish Household Survey, this survey asks for feedback from residents who have used the service.  In 2015-16, service users reported a 96% satisfaction rate with all SLLC facilities and SLLC received 75 Excellence in Customer Service nominations.

Outdoor recreation and country parks
SLLC is also responsible for outdoor country parks and outdoor learning and adventure, including over 130 sports pitches, an indoor synthetic pitch, 12 bowling greens, six golf courses, a Golf Development Centre, a water sports centre and seasonal activities, including tennis and putting.

Attendance at Outdoor Recreation and Country Parks services – Target 2.1 million

What this means This indicator shows attendance figures at the council's outdoor recreation and country parks service.
Why this matters This indicator measures the extent to which the council is achieving its aim of encouraging more people to take part in sporting and leisure activities.
Our performance and how we compare Comparator 2013-14 2014-15 2015-16 Are we improving?
SLLC 2.278 million 2.110 million 2.104 million  No
Scotland N/A N/A N/A
How we have performed in improving this public service The number of attendances at outdoor recreation and country parks in 2015-16 declined by less than 1% compared to the previous year.  A 2% increase in attendances at country parks helped offset a 2.4% decrease in golf usage, a 14.4% decrease in attendances at activities organised by the Outdoor Learning and Adventure service and a 6.5% decrease in usage of Outdoor Recreation facilities (predominantly football pitch usage).

Libraries and museums

Within South Lanarkshire, there are 22 public libraries, all with ActiveIT Learning Centres (free internet access), a mobile library serving the rural communities, and a home delivery service.  We also provide reference and enquiry services, family history and genealogy resources, and online library services.  Working in partnership with key stakeholders to improve the learning experience for children and young people, the service makes a significant contribution to the Curriculum for Excellence agenda. 

SLLC directly manages one museum: Low Parks Museum which includes Hamilton Mausoleum.  However, like the library service, the work of the museum service extends further than this: from working closely with schools in the provision of learning programmes and activities off site, to informal learning opportunities provided through holiday activities, family activities, adult learning and special events.  The museum collection includes 150,000 objects which feature in temporary and permanent exhibitions.

Number of library and museum visits – No target set

What this means This indicator shows the extent to which library and museum services are reaching their potential service users.
Why this matters

This indicator measures the extent to which the council is achieving its aim of encouraging everyone to take part in cultural or learning activities which make them feel better, sometimes healthier, but always happier.  In addition, learning is not confined to classrooms or educational establishments - it can take place in a museum or library.

Our performance and how we compare Comparator 2013-14 2014-15 2015-16    Are we improving?
SLLC 1,519,612 1,479,975 1,280,090  No
Scotland  N/A N/A  N/A
How we have performed in improving this public service

Both the library and museum service separately reported decreases in their annual attendances. 

There was a 13.1% drop in library visits compared to the previous year.  This was caused by a number of libraries moving to part-time opening, along with the refurbishment of East Kilbride Shopping Centre (which impacted on East Kilbride Central Library attendances) and the closure of Calderwood Library in June 2015.  It should be noted that against the drop in the number of physical library visits, the number of virtual visits to library e-services has been steadily growing, having reached 80,000. 

Museum attendances fell by 29.2%, largely due to the high attendance figures achieved during the Lego exhibition in 2014-15, with no comparable touring exhibition taking place during 2015-16.

 

Cost per library visit – No target set

What this means This indicator calculates the cost per library visit and is a good measure for evaluating the efficiency of the service provided.
Why this matters

Libraries are no longer just about borrowing books, but have developed into a multi-function service.  This measure captures the cost for any visit – whether to borrow books, internet use, reference use etc.  Comparing costs with other councils helps us understand where variations occur and why they exist.

Comparator 2013-14 2014-15 2015-16   Are we improving?
Our performance and how we compare SLLC £3.71 £3.54 £3.72 No
Scotland £2.57 £2.45 £2.44
How we have performed in improving this public service South Lanarkshire Council’s cost per attendance at libraries increased in 2015-16 and is higher than the Scottish average figure.  This measure is impacted by the number of actual attendances at libraries in the year.  Refurbishment work in East Kilbride town centre (which impacted on East Kilbride Central Library attendances) and the closure of Calderwood Library in June 2015, led to a decline in the number of physical visits to libraries in the year and a consequent rise in the cost per library visit in 2015-16.  However, there were almost 80,000 virtual visits to library e-services as people continue to move to digital services.  Notwithstanding these issues, the library service will continue to market its services and in particular, develop its children’s programme in order to attract and retain customers.
Satisfaction with libraries: 

This indicator is derived from the Scottish Household Survey.   Compared to the previous year, the level of satisfaction with libraries has decreased in the year from 77.7% in 2014-15 to 72.7% in 2015-16, and is below the Scottish average (77.3%).  However, some caution should be taken with this Scottish Household Survey data as not all people surveyed are direct users of the service, and the sample size for the survey is small.

 

Cost per museum visit – No target set

What this means This indicator calculates the cost of museums and galleries managed or supported by councils, per visit.
Why this matters Increasing the use of museums by both personal visitors and through other enquiries (for example: schools, events) are important indicators of the value of museum services.  This indicator shows us how successful we are at increasing attendances at our museum and the value for money achieved in doing this.
Our performance and how we compare Comparator 2013-14 2014-15 2015-16   Are we improving?
SLLC £2.75 £2.90 £2.71 Yes
Scotland £3.36 £3.22 £3.07
How we have performed in improving this public service In South Lanarkshire, the cost per museum attendance is lower than the previous year and lower than the Scottish average figure. Tight budgetary control is helping to reduce the cost of this service.
Satisfaction with the museum:

This indicator is derived from the Scottish Household Survey.   Compared to the previous year, the level of satisfaction with the museum has declined in the year from 70% in 2014-15 to 67.3% in 2015-16 and is below the Scottish average (74%).  However, some caution should be taken with this Scottish Household Survey data as not all people surveyed are direct users of the service, and the sample size for the survey is small.

Cultural services

SLLC is responsible for the management of five cultural venues, namely; The Town House Hamilton, Rutherglen Town Hall, East Kilbride Arts Centre, Village Theatre East Kilbride,  and Lanark Memorial Hall.  As well as the major venues, SLLC manages over 70 community halls, integrated community facilities/community wings and the letting of schools for community use. 

Attendances at cultural venues – No target set

What this means This indicator measures attendances at cultural venues including halls, schools and arts venues.
Why this matters Our aim is to get more and more people taking part in cultural activities which make them feel better, sometimes healthier but always happier. By taking part, individuals can become more creative, healthy and enthused. 
Our performance and how we compare Comparator 2013-14 2014-15 2015-16   Are we improving?
SLLC 2,095,167 2,149,540 2,027,734 No
Scotland N/A N/A N/A
How we have performed in improving this public service Despite recording over 2 million attendances across the service, annual attendances have decreased by 5.7% in comparison to 2014-15. Attendances at community halls fell by 7.5%, whilst attendances at cultural venues were 8% lower than the previous year, largely as a result of fewer weddings and event hires.

Customer consultation

SLLC continues to operate a programme of mystery visits which are carried out by a pool of customers who feed back on their personal experience of using our cultural venues, leisure centres, libraries, museum and outdoor facilities.  Throughout 2015-16, 67 visits were carried out providing valuable feedback on our services and, once again, highlighting a high standard of customer service received.  Areas for improvement included the (inconsistent) wearing of name badges, our website navigation, as well as some slight discrepancies between the printed leaflet and the website.

As a company, SLLC is aware that its customers are the best people to feedback on its services and consistently encourages customer feedback through a variety of mechanisms, formal and informal, written and verbal.  Through such consultation, we are better able to identify where our service is failing and needs to improve.  During 2015-16, we recorded 609 complaints and comments, 30% fewer than the previous year.  98% of all complaints were resolved at the frontline.  One complaint was escalated to the Ombudsman.  Year on year, the top five areas of complaints have remained largely the same, however during 2015-16, we saw a reduction in the number of complaints against these areas: maintenance (down 33%), programming (down 43%), staff performance (down 40%), communication (down 1%) and policy (down 50%).  Improvements which have been made to our service as a result of this customer feedback include:

  • introducing a new process, ‘Learn 2’, into the swimming lesson programme to advise parents of their children’s swimming ability and progression;
  • purchasing additional equipment to support programmed activities at Blantyre Leisure Centre;
  • improving maintenance of the gym equipment at Forth Sports and Community Centre; and
  • altering opening times at East Kilbride Arts Centre.

Whilst we can often turn complaints into opportunities to improve our service, the Excellence in Customer Service scheme allows our customers to recognise staff who have impressed them in the course of carrying out their duties.  In total, 75 nominations were received during 2015-16, broken down as follows:

Excellence in Customer Service nominations 2015-16
  Team Individual
Support 0 2
Cultural 5 6
Libraries and museums 15 12
Sport and physical activity (SPA) 15 18
Outdoor and country parks 0 2
Total 35 40

Areas for improvement and action

We will take forward the following key areas for improvement:

  • market and promote cultural facilities to raise awareness of programmes and activities on offer through the development of cross service marketing as well as targeted social media campaigns
  • develop new and existing partnerships to support the development of new opportunities for people to participate in physical activity, and in particular, strengthen the partnerships with the new Health and Social Care Partnership in extending the provision of health intervention programmes

Further information

Resource Plans are prepared each year by all Resources to outline the key developments they intend to take forward in the year.  Performance and actions relating to leisure and culture services can be found in the Community and Enterprise Resource Plan.

Twice a year, performance reports are presented to council committees on progress against the Resource Plans. In addition, reports detailing progress against the Council Plan Connect objectives are prepared – see Quarter 2 and Quarter 4 progress reports.

More information on council objectives can be found in the Council Plan Connect and also the Annual Performance Report.

The information contained within this report reflects the position based on the data available at the time of publication (March 2017).