Bright Ideas For Employee Wellbeing At MSP Flagship

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16/08/2017

The UK’s leading science and technology park operator, Manchester Science Partnerships (MSP) has unveiled the leisure and fitness offering at its flagship Bright Building.

MSP shares the ethos of its majority stakeholder, Bruntwood, on the benefits an active lifestyle has on employee wellbeing. A fully-equipped fitness studio, secure cycle storage hub, shower facilities and kit-drying room, are integral to the design of the 70,000 sq ft facility – the first new build at Manchester Science Park in 15 years.

Located on the ground floor of the four-storey building, the studio will boast top-of-the-range equipment including: TRX, kettlebells, gymnastic rings, olympic bars, steppers and spin bikes.

Manchester-based personal trainer Louise Swann – who owns and operates Swann Fitness – will be delivering a range of group workout classes based on her own brand of resistance and aerobic workouts. She will also be leading spin classes and delivering 1-1 personal training.

A programme of wellbeing sessions, including yoga and guided meditation, will run alongside the exercise classes. During warmer months, these sessions will also be held in the outdoor yoga ‘square’ which was specially included in the landscape design of the development.

Louise has a unique perspective on the importance of a healthy mind and body for workers in the corporate world. Formerly a lawyer in the City, she decided to turn her passion for health and fitness into a career, having witnessed first-hand the need to balance long hours with exercise, mindfulness and a good diet.

She has been working with MSP to design health and wellbeing programmes, which are available to the entire 150-strong community of science and technology businesses at Manchester Science Park.

The timetable will allow MSP’s customers to fit in exercise classes throughout the working day. They will also be able to access virtual training sessions outside of this, thanks to a landmark deal between global fitness brand Les Mills and Bruntwood – the first time the world's largest provider of choreographed exercise-to-music videos has partnered with a property company.

Ethical-caterer, Friska – which has chosen the building for its first northern restaurant – is set to offer a range of healthy, fresh food and drink options to complement the classes and personal training.

Thomas Renn, Managing Director, MSP, said: “The Bright Building will truly be a place where great minds research, develop and commercialise great ideas. Knowing how demanding the world of work is, we want to provide everyone in our buildings with the chance to balance this with an active lifestyle. The benefits of exercise to general health, and workplace productivity are undisputed, and I’m confident the new facilities, and 25 classes a week will be well received by all of our customers.”

Kate Vokes, Bruntwood’s Director of Culture, who leads on the Group’s health and wellbeing philosophy, said: “Modern workplaces are no longer an environment where people sit at a desk from 9-5. People want to be able to blend leisure activities and exercise with their work schedule – and do so flexibly, on their own terms.

“Whether it’s enabling active commuting by providing showers and cycle storage facilities, encompassing exercise studios and gyms into the design of our new developments, or retrofitting our existing properties, as we have with Trafford House, our goal is to remove the barriers to exercise and promote its benefits.”

Louise Swann added: “I’m incredibly excited to be working with MSP to help deliver the Bright Building’s health and fitness offer. The mix of businessesand students on the Park creates a real buzz. I’m sure there will be plenty of interest in the unique programme of interval-style workouts and strength training which I’ve produced together with MSP.”

Officially opening on 21st September, the Bright Building will be the new headquarters for Innovate UK’s Internet of Things city demonstrator, CityVerve. It will also be home to a raft of nascent tech businesses based in Mi-IDEA – the post-accelerator innovation centre operated in partnership with Cisco.

Part-funded by the North West Evergreen Fund (backed by the European Regional Development Fund), and Greater Manchester Combined Authority, the Bright Building is located within the Corridor Manchester Enterprise Zone, which provides significant financial benefits for businesses looking to locate here.

Businesses moving to the Bright Building before March 31 2021 may be eligible for a total of £275k in business rates relief over a period of five years.