Abbeycroft Leisure has joined the Suffolk-wide initiative to offer free warm spaces to local residents.

The not-for-profit social enterprise is offering free drop-in sessions every day of the week with somewhere warm to sit and enjoy a free hot drink, read the paper, play some board games, chat with others and enjoy a free swim or hot shower.

Warm Spaces is designed to signpost people in need of warmth to a welcoming, warm space in public places such as libraries, churches, community and leisure centres.

Grants have been made available via local councils and Abbeycroft was supported by Babergh District Council through their Winter Warmth Support grant to provide the sessions at Hadleigh Pool and Leisure and Kingfisher Leisure Centre in Sudbury.

Warren Smyth, chief executive at Abbeycroft Leisure said:

“This is a great initiative and a good example of how organisations and businesses can help people in need this winter.”

“As well as offering a warm space, we’re also offering free swims because we believe that keeping active in any way you can, whether that’s a free swim or a jog or walk will help with your physical and mental wellbeing.”

Cllr Mary McLaren, Babergh Cabinet Member for Communities and Wellbeing, said:

The Warm Spaces initiative is a co-ordinated effort to make sure everyone in our district can access somewhere warm and safe through this winter. Abbeycroft’s additional offer of free swimming at its leisure centres is exactly what Babergh District Council wants to fund through its Winter Warmth Support Grant. The council will enable as many people as possible to stay healthy and active during these challenging times no matter their circumstances, and hope to see our residents take up this excellent opportunity to spend more time at our leisure centres.”

To find out more about Abbeycroft’s Warm Spaces visit