The new £1m Club Cheadle Hulme gym in Stockport has been opened by former Manchester City striker Paul Dickov.
The former local authority-run sports centre was acquired by The Laurus Trust and now offers fully modernised sports facilities to its pupils and the local community at Cheadle Hulme High School.
The renovation includes a multi-gym, the upgrading of the main sports hall with a sprung floor, new lighting, and a climbing wall and is part of a £5m project that includes new pitches at the school.
The changing rooms have also been refurbished.
The transformation was made possible with the support of the Law Family Educational Trust (LFET) and the Law Family Charitable Foundation (LFCF).
LFCF was established in 2011 by former Cheadle Hulme High Schoo pupil Andrew Law and his wife Zoë.
Andrew said: “Our aim is to inspire students from all backgrounds to build their personal confidence, find their voice, and aspire to great success in their chosen fields.
“This will be enabled through access to both outstanding education and best of class co-curricular activities including performing arts, sports programmes, debating and entrepreneurship.”
Former City player Dickov has agreed to be the LFET Sports Ambassador at the school.
He said: “It’s wonderful to see children at a state school being given such excellent opportunities normally afforded by private education.
“For me it’s about creating awareness and a love of sport for all, encouraging those who may feel intimidated or embarrassed about participating – and not just football, but a whole host of other sporting opportunities on offer here at the school.
The next phase of the renovation project is planned to start in February 2017 and will see an artificial football and rugby pitch added to the school, subject to planning. A new hockey pitch will also be included in the redesign of the outdoor space to further complement the school’s sports offering.
Planning applications have been submitted for phase three of the project, which if granted, will see the entrance of the school completely redesigned along with a new teaching school, refectory and administration facilities.
Linda Magrath, CEO and Head of Cheadle Hulme High School, added: “Everybody here is excited to be opening Club Cheadle Hulme. It’s fantastic to have these wonderful facilities which will benefit the whole community as well as our students and staff.”