1. What is this scheme?
Answer – Hackney Council is committed to the health and wellbeing of their employees. With this in mind they are now offering a scheme whereby the Council will purchase a leisure membership upfront for 1 year for you, and then take the money back from you through monthly salary deduction.
2. What is the financial benefit to me?
Answer – Normal monthly memberships costs £50 per month, however through this scheme you will only be paying on average £25.75 per month over a 12 month period, this is a saving of 49%. This is for the borough membership. You will pay on average £39.50 per month over a 12 month period rather than the headline rate of £58.95 per month if you want the UK wide membership.
3. Who is eligible?
Answer – To be eligible you must be an employee of the Council, and be paid through the Council’s payroll. You must also have a contract that is expected to last at least 10 months (in order to cover the repayment period).
4. What can I access through this membership?
Answer – The borough membership will give you access to all centres in Hackney and will include gym, swim and classes. More information can be found at: https://www.better.org.uk/leisure/areas/hackney
If you choose the UK wide membership then you can access over 150 centres including gym, swim, classes,sauna and racquet sports plus more.
For certain exclusions visit:https://www.better.org.uk/terms/offer-terms
5. What if I have more questions about the facilities available?
Answer – Pop into any of our leisure centres and they’ll be happy to tell you about the facilities. You might like to visit any leisure centre(s) you are thinking of using in advance to simply have a look around.
6. How can I join this scheme?
Answer – You can apply online at: https://www.better.org.uk/join-membership-membership
You will then need to enter a code and then complete the application process:
London Borough of Hackney employees: lbhjoin
You will be notified automatically by email or text message once your membership has been approved. If you do not receive notification within 7 days of submitting your application, you must contact Corporate@GLL.Org
Once you have been accepted onto the scheme you will be emailed a unique membership ID number. You can take this number to any centre within Hackney (If membership is Better Health & Fitness), or your nominated centre if the membership is Better Health & Fitness UK to pick up your membership card.
7. When can I join the scheme?
Answer – There will be 3 joining windows each year. These will be in January, April and September. The window will be open for those months only so ensure your selections are submitted quickly. Should you miss that window you can join directly at the centre on a standard monthly direct debit membership untilthe next window comes around.
8. Can I transfer across to the new scheme if I am an existing member?
Answer – any existing direct debit members will need to cancel their existing membership in accordance with your terms and conditions. Please visit your home centre, or alternatively you can submit a cancellation request through your home centre web page.
9. Can I buy membership for someone else such as a family member?
Answer – No, the scheme is open to employees of the Council for their own use.
10. Am I tied into a contract?
Answer – You are not tied into a contract beyond compliance with Better’s terms and conditions and the ten month repayment plan. Please note however that you cannot terminate your membership early.
11. What if I change my mind or the facilities are not what I am expecting?
Answer - It is important that you check carefully what you are applying for before you submit your application. The circumstances under which you can cancel or change the membership are very limited. Please feel free to visit any of the leisure centres before you apply for membership so that you are fully aware of their locations and the facilities available.
12. When will deductions from my salary begin?
Answer - Repayments will begin from the month after (or thenext available pay run). The cost of your chosen membership is taken from your salary over 10 months as per below costs;
- All Inclusive Corporate (Borough only) – £30.90 per month x 10 months
- All Inclusive UK Corporate – £47.40 per month x 10 months
If you have any queries relating to your gym scheme deductions you should contact Payroll.
13. If I leave Hackney Council does my membership come with me?
Answer – if you leave employment with Hackney Council the final amount of the membership cost will be deducted from your salary, the membership will be yours to carry on using and will automatically expire at the end of the 12 month period.
14. What happens during Maternity leave/Adoption leave or other leave where I may go into nopay.
Answer – While you are receiving payments from the Council (e.g. occupational maternity pay),deductions will continue. Deductions from your pay will then commence again, once you are being paid again. If you do not return to work, the outstanding debt will be recovered in full.If you take an extended period of unpaid leave, you may be required to re-pay the outstanding debt in full.
15. Will there be a price increase within the 12 month period?
Answer – The monthly deductions will remain the same for the 12 month period and your prices will befixed. Prices are subject to review every year and any changes in costs will be communicated out prior toany decisions needing to be made regarding renewing of memberships / new applications.
16. Can I use this offer in conjunction with other offers?
Answer - This offer does not run in conjunction with other offers. If you think you may qualify for otherconcessions (for example if you are disabled or over 60) then please check the eligibility criteria and rateson GLL's website. In that way you will be able make sure you get the best rate.
17. What happens if my membership is terminated by Better owing to a breach of their terms andconditions?
Answer – You must comply with the terms and conditions set by Better. If your membership is terminated because of a breach of those terms and conditions, Better may terminate your membership and the loan to the Council will be immediately repayable.
18. How can I find out more about Better’s terms and conditions and how their scheme works?
Answer – You are strongly recommended to read Betters’ terms and Conditions which can be found here: www.better.org.uk/hackney-council