Refurbishment of Sauna and Steam Room

As part of our ongoing commitment to provide you with the very best facilities at Bisham Abbey, we will be undertaking a complete refurbishment of the sauna and steam room.

When will the refurbishment be taking place?

Work will begin on Monday 27th January and will last for approximately four weeks.

What does this mean?

The sauna and steam room will be closed for the duration of the refurbishment, starting Monday 27th January.  We aim to reopen the sauna and steam room on Monday 24th February and will keep you notified of any changes as the work progresses.

To reduce disruption, we will be switching round the male and female changing rooms. This change will be clearly signposted on the changing room doors.

We thank you for your patience whilst this work takes place.

If you have any questions or queries please speak to a member of the reception team on your next visit, or call 01628 476911.

Thank you,

Bisham Abbey Team



Join the Squash Club!

August 2019

Are you keen on trying a new sport? If you are aged between 7-15 years old, you can join the Bisham Abbey Junior Squash Club and learn how to play squash in an exciting and engaging environment!
You can also join our adult Squash Club that has 4 leagues, 3 teams, and is always playing in different counties, all year round. This is a great opportunity to develop your squash skills, but also get a chance to test them in action.
Contact or call 07841 794910 for more information!



Exciting New Partnerships!

August 2019 

We are thrilled to announce a new partnership with local team, Maidenhead FC United who will now be training fulltime at Bisham Abbey for the forthcoming 2019/20 pre-season. We couldn’t be happier to have Maidenhead United FC join the Bisham Abbey family and we look forward to the amazing future ahead!



National Sports Centres leading the way on mental health awareness

October 2018

Four National Sports Centres: Bisham Abbey, Lilleshall, Stoke Mandeville Stadium and the National Water Sports Centre at Holme Pierrepont Country Park are coming together to launch the Heads Up campaign, whose aim is to raise awareness of mental health and wellbeing among staff at the facilities.

The centres, all operated by Serco Leisure, have already put 32 key senior staff members through Mental Health First Aid Training, a course which teaches participants how to identify and support individuals who may be experiencing mental health issues, by signposting them towards the appropriate employee resource.  As part of Heads Up, this nationally-recognised course will be offered to front of house staff, arming those team members with the skills needed to be the first line of support for colleagues experiencing mental health issues.

Steven Shuttlewood, Sports Development Manager and Heads Up lead for the National Centres said:

“Heads Up is our way of recognising that we can all do more to promote awareness of mental health issues.

“We want to use sport and activity as a route to better mental health, so staff are encouraged to take part in the regular sport and social activities we run at the sites. We’re always looking to add more, and mix the variety so people not into sports have options, like our regular Midday Mile lunchtime walks at Lilleshall.

“This isn’t just about staff though. A great example of the way we’ve engaged with users of our facilities this year were the Football in Mind tournaments we hosted at Lilleshall. These were for people using the sport as a route to recovery, or to maintain their mental health. The tournaments were a huge success with over 180 people taking part and many more turning up to show support.

“So many of us work in busy, deadline driven environments, but it’s vital we all take time to think about the people we work for and alongside, and think about our own mental health.”

Charles Johnston, Sport England’s Property Director, said: “The Heads Up campaign and the skills that it will equip people with are a welcome addition to the work that already takes place to ensure the wellbeing of colleagues. It has been proven that sport and activity can be hugely beneficial to people who may have mental health problems.  Sport England is delighted to see the Heads Up Campaign being extended to the leisure sector.”

Heads Up aims to actively tackle discrimination on the grounds of mental health to ensure that everyone is treated with dignity and respect. Using the power of sport and recreation to promote wellbeing, with a special focus on encouraging physical activity and social interaction for their contribution to good mental health.

Steven and his team will be regularly monitoring the range of activities on offer and focusing on the needs of staff, allowing them to take positive action on their own mental health issues.

Each month, the teams will be celebrating and sharing information about what’s happening at part of the campaign, with #MoreHeadsUp introduced to tie everything together under one umbrella.

Bisham Abbey National Sports Centres retain Quest -Outstanding

Serco Leisure’s National Sports Centre Bisham Abbey have retained their Quest - Outstanding rating, joining an elite group of facilities, which have kept the highest ranking for consecutive years.

Quest is the leading Continuous Improvement Tool for the leisure industry. To receive an Outstanding rating, first a facility needs to have been judged ‘Excellent’. Once that rating has been achieved, centres can apply for the Quest Stretch Assessment, which would enable them to aim for Outstanding.

Quest noted the “high standards of service delivery and customers’ and partners’ opinions of those services” and the fact that Serco Leisure, “…is a ‘trusted organisation in the eyes of its partners and Sport England in terms of delivering what it says it will”.

This achievement by Bisham Abbey keeps them in the top 1% of best-managed leisure facilities in the UK.

Steve Nelson, Serco’s National Sports Centre Partnership Director, said:  

“Our primary goal is improvement, and we model the way we work on the example set by the elite athletes who use our facilities. They never rest on their laurels and neither do we.

This Quest Stretch Assessment and result are proof of the amazing work done by teams across both centres to provide great service to every user of the facilities we offer.

I’m particularly proud of the work we’ve done with National Governing Bodies (NGB), onsite partners and community partners, resulting in us gaining outstanding in partnerships and collaboration”

Charles Johnston, Director of Property at Sport England said: 

“This is a huge achievement for the two National Sports Centres, joining a very select group of leisure providers who can boast of retaining their Outstanding rating in Quest Stretch.

"It’s great to see the work the centres do being recognised like this, from the relationships they’ve formed and nurtured with key NGBs to the work they do with the community to encourage people of all ages and abilities to get active, using the high quality sporting facilities they have on their doorsteps.”


Rivertime Regatta - June 2018

The Rivertime Accessible Regatta will be held at the Bisham Abbey National Sports Centre, Berkshire and will include competitive bell boating, accessible sailing, wheelchair powerboating and canoeing, as well as a variety of land-based sports and training activities.

Naomi Riches MBE is the Patron of the ‘Rivertime Accessible Regatta 2018’. Naomi was part of Great Britain Para-Rowing team for a decade where she competed in the Mixed Coxed Fours until she retired in 2013

Naomi will be supported at the Regatta by fellow Paralympians Rachel Morris MBE who has won Paralympic gold medals in both cycling and rowing. Katie-George Dunlevy competed for Great Britain as a Paralympic rower and as a cyclist. Jeanette Chippington MBE, won a Gold medal in the 2013 ICF Canoe Sprint Championships qualifying her for the 2016 Paralympic Games in Rio. James Fox James MBEfollowed up three successive World Championship titles by winning Paralympic gold at Rio 2016.  Giedre Rakauskaite won gold in the PR3Mix 4+ at the 2017 World Rowing Championships in Sarasota.

Bank Holiday Opening Hours


Fri 30th March

08:00 - 17:0008:00 - 16:00

Sat 31st March

08:00 - 17:0008:00 - 16:00

Sun 1st April

08:00 - 17:0008:00 - 16:00

Sat 2nd April

08:00 - 17:0008:00 - 16:00

Jan 2018

Bisham Abbey has been rated 8.3 out of 10 in annual Guest Review Awards in 2017., a global leader in connecting travellers with the widest choice of incredible places to stay, has honoured accommodation partners that consistently deliver guest experiences with a 2017 Guest Review Award.

Bisham Abbey are delighted to receive this award for the second year since joining the programme.

Steve Nelson, Serco Partnership Director for the National Centres, said: Bisham Abbey provides an outstanding training environment for our Elite athletes and its great that we’ve been recognised by our guests for its great facilities in our accommodation offering.  We are proud that our guests have enjoyed their stay with us and have taken the time to review our facility – that means a lot.

Dec 2017

Serco Leisure is supporting mental health awareness for the first time by introducing ‘Mental Health First Aid’ training for all managers at Bisham Abbey National Sports Centre.

Using well-established training provider Mental Health First Aid England (MHFA), Serco Leisure will be offering the organisation’s ‘First Responder’ and ‘Champions’ courses to duty, operations, general and team managers, as well as safeguarding leads.

The Mental Health First Aid courses are designed to arm participants with the skills and knowledge required to deal with key mental health issues in the workplace, aiming to:

·         Give a deeper understanding of common issues that impact on people’s mental health

·         Teach practical skills that can be used every day, including being able to spot signs and symptoms, and guide   people towards appropriate support

·         Reduce stigma around the issue and boost confidence in dealing with the subject

·         Encourage people to start a conversation with a person who may be experiencing a mental health issue

·         Promote early intervention, which in turn enables recovery

June 2017

A busy and exciting day was to be seen at Bisham Abbey National Sports Centre as the first ever Rivertime Accessible Regatta welcomed over 300 young people with a wide range of disabilities and special needs to try out sports many of which they could never access before. In the presence of HRH The Princess Royal, who launched the bell boating competition, and a number of Paralympians and Olympians the event brought smiles to everyone’s faces.

Pupils from over 20 Berkshire, Buckinghamshire and Oxfordshire schools were cheered on by Paralympic medallists Anne Dickins MBE, Jeannette Chippington MBE and Naomi Riches MBE and Olympic medallists Dame Katherine Grainger DBE and Steve Williams OBE. Aspiring champions Rob Sargent and Georgia Carmichael also came to show their support and help motivate the young people to develop a long-term involvement with accessible sports.

The Rivertime Accessible Regatta was organised by two charities, Rivertime Boat Trust together with Give Them a Sporting Chance with the aim to give children and young people the same sporting opportunities other young people freely enjoy. The river was brought to life with bell boating, accessible sailing and powerboating, kayaking, canoeing and paddle boarding. On the land, participants could try a whole host of indoor and outdoor activities ranging from boccia and wheelchair basketball to cycling, football, rugby and air weapons.

National Fitness Day - Wedneday 27th September

Come along to any of the below classes and gym for FREE. 

Call 01628 476911 to book on and don't forget to arrive 10 mins before to register

  • Bootcamp 6.45-07.30
  • TRX Fusion 8.00-8.30
  • Body pump 09.30-10.30
  • Tai chi 1130-12.30
  • Yoga 1230-13.30
  • Cross training 19.00-20.00
  • Spin 19.00-19.45
  • Circuits 20.00-20.30


Gym Changing Room

We are excited to announce that Phase 2 of the our changing room refurbishment will commence from 4th September to 11th September.  During this time the male changing rooms will be out of use although alternative facilities will be provided. The female changing rooms will operate as normal but with some disruptions.

We appreciate your understanding during this time.

Fit for Life Week 20th-28th May

We are pleased to announce Bisham Abbey is supporting Fit for Life week, in partnership with the Royal borough of Maidenhead and Windsor. The aim of the project is to encourage residents 14+ to adults and families to take part in sport and physical activity on a weekly basis.
Bisham Abbey is supporting the week by providing FREE access to the gym.  If you want to come and try our facilities please email or just turn up.

Monday 1st May Bank Holiday Opening Hours

Gym Opening - 8.00-17.00
Café Opening - 9.00-15.00
Class Timetable
Bodypump – 9.30-10.30
Strength & Stretch – 10.30-11.30
Circuits – 12.00-13.00

Easter Hours 2017

Easter Opening Times


Good Friday 8am -7pm

Easter Saturday - 8-7pm

Easter Sunday - 8am-7pm

Easter Monday: 8am-6pm








Friday 14th April



Strength and Stretch

Rock Revs








Saturday 15th April


Rock Revs













Sunday 16th April



Easter Circuits





Monday 17th April



Strength and Stretch








Win a Wedding Competition Winners


Congratulations to Kirsten Miller and David Ashman, winners of our ‘Win a Wedding Reception’ competition who received the highest number of votes for their proposal story. And what a proposal it was, lights, cameras and Piccadilly Circus.
We met the couple to go through the details of their prize and what a lovely couple they are. As well as having their wedding at Bisham Abbey they will also receive a bridal bouquet, table flowers and chair covers supplied by Flora Special Occasion, personal training sessions with Train Unity and gym membership as part of their prize.
If your interested in having your wedding at the historic Bisham Abbey then please call our wedding team on 01628 402582 or email


Win a Wedding Winners Announced!

Congratulations to Kirsten Miller and David Ashman who have won our ‘Win a wedding reception competition’.  Kirsten and David amassed over 1600 votes from friends and family to be crowned the winners.
The couple have won their wedding ceremony and reception plus all the extras that make a wedding day extra special.  The package also includes a bridal bouquet, head table flower arrangement and chairs covers provided by Flora Special Occasion.  They also get  3 months gym membership and Training Unity  who are based out of Bisham included  6 personal training sessions -  so no excuses now not to be in the best possible shape for their big day.

Kirsten and David, live Bracknell, Berkshire and have been together since 2007.  Kirsten who works for KPMG met David when she was standing to be a councillor for Wokingham Borough council.  

When they saw the competition on Facebook they knew the venue was absolutely beautiful and since they were planning on getting married at Sonning church which is also on the river, made Bisham the perfect venue. 

Christmas Opening Hours 2016

Christmas Opening Hours

Bisham Abbey National Sport Centre, managed by Serco on behalf of Sport England, today hosted an event to welcome home and celebrate the Rio Olympic and Paralympic medal winners and athletes who train and are based at the National Sports Centre in Marlow. In total, ten Olympic sports and 65 Olympic medallists are involved at Bisham Abbey including the Olympic gold medal winning women’s hockey team, men’s hockey team, rowing, canoeing, shooting and the Paralympic wheelchair tennis, canoeing, rowing and equestrian. Rio athletes who attended the celebration, and unveiling of Rio medal ‘Wall of Fame’, included: Alex Danson, Giselle Ansley, Jodie Leigh, and Ellie Watton from the gold-medal winning women’s hockey squad; Liam Heath who won gold and silver in sprint canoeing; Pete Reed a three-times Olympic rowing gold medallist, most recently in the men’s eight in Rio; Pete Lambert who was a finalist in the men’s quadruple sculling; Anne Dickins and Jeannette Chippington who both won gold in the Paralympic canoeing; and, James Fox who won gold in the Paralympic rowing.

Bisham Abbey goes to great lengths to support GB’s Olympic and Paralympic teams, for example, in preparation for Rio, the main hockey pitch at the centre was changed to the same blue hockey pitch that was used at the Olympics, so that the hockey teams were immediately playing on a very familiar surface. The women’s hockey team have said that they were not nervous when it came to the penalty shoot-out in the final, as they just thought about being back at Bisham Abbey. The Centre is now looking forward to do the same in preparation for the Tokyo Olympics. Alex Danson, member of the Olympic gold medal winning women’s hockey team, said: “Bisham Abbey truly is a world class facility. The partnership between UK Sport, Sport England, English Institute of Sport and Serco has seen the facilities improve, improve and improve.”

FREE 8 week girls gym and fitness program  

New fitness program starts in October aimed at girls aged 11-16 years as an alternative to PE lessons & other sporting opportunities.  A great opportunity to try out some equipment in the gym and also some specific classes aimed at this age group.  For more information or to book a space please contact Steven Shuttlewood our Sport and Community Development Co-ordinator,

Newly Refurbed Gym 

New Gym Equipment

Here’s a sneak peek at what our new gym equipment will look like, with our 3D artist impression.  
To find out about membership please call 01628 402592.

Overview of the gym


Spinning Class


New Gym Refurbishment happening!

We are so excited about all the new equipment we will be getting! There will be new treadmills, cross trainers and bikes that feature an integrated TV, interactive courses, internet connectivity plus lots more features. The bikes in the spin studio will be replaced with WATT bikes which is designed to replicate the smooth feel of the road. We are also getting a powermill, new linear leg press plus an additional new lifting platform for the free weights area.

New Gym Refurb

In order to replace all the equipment, there is a possibility that we will need to close the entire gym for a period of time from Tuesday 30th August. We are working with our contractors to ensure disruptions are kept to a minimum and we will continue to update you on the decisions being made.

For membership details please call Jack on 01628 402592 or email

Gym Open Weekend 8th-10th July

Come along to our Open Weekend and find out what Bisham Abbey has to offer.  FREE classes ( pre-booking required) and FREE use of the gym, steam and sauna

Special Offer – Join over the weekend and pay nothing until August!

Gym Open Weekend Times

Friday 8th July        17:00 - 21:00
Saturday 9th July   10:00 - 15:00
Sunday 10th July   10:00 - 15:00

  • FREE classes (prebooking required 01628 476911)
  • FREE  Use of the Gym
  • FREE Fitness Advice from qualified instructors

Come down to our gym from 5pm on Friday 8th July  and try out our state of the art equipment  or one of our classes.

Facilities include 90 station gym with a range of cardio and resistance machines.  Extensive free weights area with lifting platform. Whether you want to exercise for the first time, get back into sport or are a fitness fanatic we have something to suit you.

FREE Classes Available 


  • Cross Training – 6.00-7.00 pm
  • Studio cycling – 7.00-7.45 pm
  • Gym HIT – 8.00-8.30 pm


  • Studio Cycling – 9.00- 9.45 am
  • Body Attack – 9.30-10.30am
  • Squat Workshop – 10.00-10.30 am
  • Ultimate sandbags – 10.30-11.30 am
  • Pilates – 11.30-12.30 pm
  • Gym HIT – 12.00-12.30 pm
  • Fit steps – 1.00-2.00 pm
  • Squat Workshop – 2.00-2.30 pm


  • Studio cycling – 9.00-9.45
  • Studio cycling  - 10.00-10.45
  • Core workshop – 10am-10.30am
  • Gym HIT – 11.0 – 11.30am
  • Yoga – 10.30-12.00pm
  • Bootcamp  – 1.00-2.00pm  ( outdoor if weather permitting)
  • Core workshop – 3.00- 3.30pm

Book now to secure your place 01628 476911 or Email:

JUNE 2016


Bisham Abbey and Lilleshall National Sports Centres have joined the list of signatories of the ‘Mental Health Charter for Sport and Recreation’

What is the Charter?

The Sport and Recreation Alliance, alongside the Professional Players Federation (PPF) and with support from the mental health charity Mind, launched the Mental Health Charter for Sport and Recreation in March 2015.  It sets out how sport can use its collective power to tackle mental ill health and the stigma that surrounds it.

The Charter outlines five actions that we, as a sector, can take to help make mental health a commonly understood matter and to help those in need.

We will:

• Use the power of sport and recreation to promote wellbeing, with a special focus on encouraging physical activity and social interaction for their contribution to good mental health.

• Publicly promote and adopt good mental health policies and best practice within our sports and recreational activities.

• Promote positive public health messages using diverse role models and ambassadors to reduce the stigma attached to mental health problems.

• Actively tackle discrimination on the grounds of mental health to ensure that everyone is treated with dignity and respect.

• Support the establishment of a pan-sport platform to work closely with the mental health sector to develop and share networks, resources and best practice.

• Regularly monitor our performance, assess progress and take positive action on mental health issues.

Why have we signed it?

We want to ensure that our sports and recreational activities create a welcoming, inclusive and positive environment for everyone - including our participants, professionals, volunteers and spectators.

What we have done so far?

Both National Centres have committed to designing and implementing an action plan to take positive action across the six areas of the Mental Health Charter for Sport and Recreation.  A Charter Action Plan Working Group will be established to review what facilities and activities exist already, synergies and potential new activities.  These will be communicated in due course.

To help facilitate a joined approach we have appointed a lead staff member:

Steven Shuttlewood
Sport and Community Development Coordinator
Tel:  07718 195 358

Case Studies     

We’ve not yet produced any of our own case studies but why not take a look at the positive action other signatories are taking (

Further information

Further information about mental health and mental health services can be found on the Mind website ( where there is also lots of useful resources, information and support.

Physical activity can have a positive impact on physical and mental health. The Sport and Recreation Alliance has produced an evidence summary document ( highlighting the research that demonstrates how sport and recreation can help support and benefit people who are experiencing mental health problems.

May 2016

Beginners Junior Squash course is starting on 28th May with a FREE taster session. The session will be 1.5 hours and an opportunity to learn the basics of squash, different shots and movements which is taught through fun activities and mini games.  The session on the day will be split into two age groups:

8 - 11 yrs from 10am - 11:30am

12 - 16 yrs from 12 noon - 1:30pm

The 8 week course starts on 4th June from 10am and costs £4 per session or £30 for all 8 sessions. To register your interest or to find out more, please email


April 2016

Countess of Wessex pays visit to England Hockey

In her role as Patron, The Countess of Wessex visited Bisham Abbey on Thursday 29th April 2016, the home of England Hockey. Her Royal Highness met with players from both the men’s and women’s squads, and took part in a hockey training session on the pitches where our athletes are gearing up for a huge summer of hockey.

She met England Hockey President Sue Bodycomb and newly-appointed Chairman Royston Hoggarth, and also chatted with a number of backroom staff in our company offices at the National Sports Centre.

 As a memento, women’s team captain Kate Richardson-Walsh presented Her Royal Highness with a signed photograph of The Countess handing our team the EuroHockey trophy last summer.

England Hockey Chief Executive Sally Munday said, “I would like to sincerely thank Her Royal Highness for visiting us today, she is a fantastic Patron for England Hockey.

 “We were very keen for The Countess to meet Royston for the first time since he became Chairman, and for her to have the opportunity to wish both the men and women good luck for a huge summer ahead. The players are gearing up to line up for Great Britain this summer, and we are hosting the Champions Trophy back at the Olympic Park in June before they depart for the Rio Olympics in August so there is lots of excitement among the hockey family and The Countess really shares in that.

“As always she was exceptionally charming and personable, and we are very fortunate to have her support.”


NEW Tai Chi Class on Wednesdays 11.30-12.30, 1st class is FREE to gym members ( £8 thereafter)

March 2016

Bisham Abbey hosted over 80 schools and 1,000 students at the Berkshire Winter School Games. The event, which took place on 16th March, saw both Primary and Secondary School children showcase a very high level of talent in 11 different sport competitions.

Feb 2016

Car Park

Improvements to the carpark lights have now been completed. We have now installed new LED energy efficient lights that reduce C02 consumption as well as significantly improving illumination for health and safety.  

Reading Women FC

We are pleased to announce a partnership with Reading Women FC the agreement comes after the Royals promotion to FA WSL 1 for 2016 and the introduction of Full- Time Professional players. General Manager, Jon Horton said ‘the facilities at Bisham are fantastic, it’s a superb environment for Kelly and her staff to continue the excellent work they have done on a part-time basis in the full-time scenario’ he added ‘the staff and management have been brilliant in sorting this agreement and making us feel welcome

December 2015

Christmas Opening Times

Please note that the Centre will be open as normal up to and including Wednesday 23rd December

 Thu 24th DecFri 25th DecSat 26th DecSun 27th Dec

Mon 28th Dec



Health & Fitness08:00-14:00ClosedClosed08:00-16:00




Engine Room08:00-14:00ClosedClosedNormal







 Tue 29th DecWed 30th DecThu 31st DecFri 1st JanSat 2nd Jan


Health & FitnessNormalNormal08:00-16:00Closed




Engine RoomNormalNormalNormalClosed






With the exception of the Abbey, the Centre will be re-opening after Christmas on Saturday 2nd January. The Abbey will re-open on Monday 4th January 2016.

August 2015

National Fitness Day - Wednesday 9th September 2015

National Fitness Day is the biggest and most visible annual celebration of physical activity of the year. It is the day to celebrate the role that physical activity plays across the UK - come and join us!

Come join us for a Free Outdoor Circuit training session at Bisham Abbey Sports Centre.  6pm-7pm* on Wednesday 9th September - weather permitting!

March 2015

FAB Football Academy One Day Clinics

Experience professional football coaching sessions with FA qualified staff.

Sessions cost £30 and take place 9:00 - 15:00 on the following dates:

  • Course 4:  Thursday 9th April 2015
  • Course 5: Thursday 16th April 2015
  • Course 6: Thursday 28th May 2015
  • Course 7: Thursday 30th July 2015
  • Course 8: Thursday 6th August 2015
  • Course 9: Thursday 13th August 2015
  • Course10: Thursday 20th August 2015
  • Course 11: Thursday 27th August 2015

Players will receive:

  • Professional Qualified Coaching
  • Access & opportunities for trials at professional clubs
  • Invitation to FAB Academy 10 week course
  • Train with other talented boys / girls
  • Experience Football Coaching
  • Prizes
  • U6, U7, U8, U9, U10, U11, U12, U13 and Goalkeeper Training. 

Places are limited, booking is essential.

For more information or to book a place, visit the FAB Academy website:



March 2015

Living Tennis Easter Holiday Camps

Living Tennis are delivering holiday camps at Bisham Abbey this Easter.

The camps run from Monday to Thursday, catering for all
ages and abilities.

Mon 30th March - Thu 2nd April (week 1)
Mon 6th - Thu 9th April (week 2)
Mon 13th - Thu 16th April (week 3)

Book now to avoid disappointment via the Living Tennis website (opens in new window)


Bisham Abbey NSC run both normal Junior camps and Junior and Pro Academy camps for performance players.

Download an application form for your preferred camp below:



Sportivate Squash Sessions

Aged between 12-16 and always wanted to try Squash? Or have you given it a go before but want to improve your skills? Then our new Squash Sportivate sessions are for you!

Starting on 25th February at Bisham Abbey, these sessions are aimed at both beginners and those looking to improve. The course is for 12 – 16 year olds and lasts for 6 weeks.

4 – 5pm: 12 – 14 year olds
5 – 6pm: 14 – 16 year olds

Cost: £10 (to be paid in advance)

Email  for more details.

Wedding Fair - Sunday 5th October 2014

Join us at Bisham Abbey on Sunday 5 October for our 2014 Wedding Fair, organised by Berkshire Wedding Fairs.

The fair opens at 11am and runs until 3pm providing a fantastic opportunity for you to meet a great range of suppliers all under one roof to gain inspiration for your special day.

Staff will be on hand at the venue to answer any questions you may have and to help you plan your perfect wedding day.

Venue showrounds can be booked on request, enabling you to sample one of Buckinghamshire’s most dramatic venues.

Set on the banks of the River Thames and dating back to the 13th Century, the Abbey has a stunning and intriguing history which includes ownership by Henry VIII.

Admission is free and advance booking is not required but if you do require any further information please contact the organisers on:

Telephone: 07708 249 440 or 07990 711 444

Like us on Facebook:

September 2014

One small step at Bisham Abbey this National Fitness Day!

Staff and members of Bisham Abbey National Sports Centre are gearing up for a week-long festival of fitness culminating in National Fitness Day on 26th September.

The team are looking to raise awareness about the health and well-being benefits, that just one day of fitness, would bring to an individual. According to UK Active, just 30 minutes of exercise twice a week, supports a healthier body, mind and spirit.

You’re invited to join us for a workout class or to take part in a FREE sporting activity this National Fitness Day. Click below for more information.

National Fitness Day

May 2014

Its an exciting time right now at Bisham Abbey National Sports Centre with the opening of our new accommodation.  There are 50 double en-suite bedrooms available, each equipped with tea and coffee making facilities, desks, bath tubs or showers and 8 purpose-built rooms fully adhering to Equalities Act 2010 guidelines.

For accommodation bookings, please contact us on 01628 402582 (Mon-Fri 9-5) or 01628 476911 for out of hours bookings and enquiries.


Our new restaurant, The Engine Room and the cafe, Refuel have also both opened for business serving a range of drinks, fresh snacks and nutritional food for all site users.


We are also delighted to announce the completion of our extended weights gym, which has received a greater floor space and the addition of £40,000 of weights equipment.

Come down and see the new site for yourself - call us on 01628 476911 for more information or to book your visit.


May 2014

Celebrate Christmas in Style at Bisham Abbey
Bookings are now being taken for our Christmas Parties. Celebrate Christmas 2014 in the atmospheric surroundings of our beautiful 13th Century Abbey. Our exciting range of Christmas parties and events for 2014 include:
Moulin Rouge Christmas Party
Friday 28 November 2014
A night of glitz, glamour and can-can cabaret makes Moulin Rouge a night not to be missed.
7pm to midnight, tickets £45
Masquerade Ball
Friday 12 December 2014
The ultimate evening of entertainment featuring truly indulgent celebrations as guests enjoy a night of mystery with our elegant masquerade themed ball.
7pm to midnight, tickets £40
Traditional Christmas Dinner
Friday 5 December 2014
Relax and enjoy a sumptuous Christmas dinner, drinks and dancing with the stunning backdrop of the 13th Century Abbey.
7pm to midnight, tickets £38
Traditional Christmas Lunches
Thursday 4 and Thursday 11 December 2014
Come and celebrate Christmas in style with a themed lunch party encompassing a mouth-watering Christmas lunch and drinks.
12pm to 3pm, tickets £30
If you book your event before 31st August 2014, you’ll receive a complimentary bottle of Prosecco per group of 6*
Places are limited so book early to avoid disappointment by calling 01628 402589 or More information including menus will be provided at point of enquiry. 


Lord Lieutenant Launches Rivertime Boatability At  Bisham Abbey


The Lord Lieutenant of Berkshire, the Honourable Mary Bayliss, has launched a new joint venture with Rivertime Boat Trust and Bisham Abbey Navigation Sailing School, Boatability, which offers non-abled participants the opportunity to participate in physical activity on the water.

The Rivertime Boat Trust currently works with disabled participants to offer them the opportunity for trips on the river. The new activities will be run from the Bisham Abbey sailing school and will offer dinghy sailing, bell boating, raft building and open top kayaking as taster sessions. Two new Bell boats and a Pioneer safety boat have been purchased by Rivertime for use at Bisham Abbey and a Wheelie boat will be delivered in July.  These sessions will be offered to Special Needs schools and charities for the disabled.

These sessions will be aimed at local, regional and national participants, to allow the site to become a National Centre for Accessible Boating.  As well as working with schools, charities, and universities the new venture will look to strike partnerships with various groups supporting the disabled.

The Rt Hon Mary Bayliss said “I am delighted to help launch this new venture with Rivertime and Bisham Abbey Navigation Sailing School. Since the launch of Rivertime seven years ago it has provided a wonderful facility for more than 10,000 disabled and disadvantaged people to enjoy the River Thames. It was fitting that this work was recognised last year with the Queen’s Award for Voluntary service. This new venture at Bisham Abbey will greatly expand the opportunities for many more people. “  

The Rivertime Boat Trust was founded in 2006 because previously there had been no boat operating for disabled and disadvantaged people on the River Thames between Windsor and Oxford. More than 200 groups and 10,000 people have enjoyed using the launch ‘Rivertime’ since its inception.

For enquiries on Boatability, contact Peter May, 07742 495486 or


April 2014


Easter Opening Hours

Please note that our Easter bank holiday opening hours will be as follows.
Good Friday 08.00 -18.00pm
Easter Monday 08.00 - 18.00pm
This will affect our classes on these days and we will run the following sessions:
Friday 18th April 
Body Pump- 9.30 - 10.30
Body Balance- 10.30 - 11.30
Revs- 12.30 - 1.30
Monday 21st April 
Body Pump- 9.30-10.30
Body Balance- 12.30-13.30


Bisham Abbey Wedding Fair - Sunday 18th May 2014, 11:00 – 15:00

Are you starting to plan your wedding day or busy searching for the best local wedding suppliers to compliment your dream day?

Then come down to beautiful Bisham Abbey on Sunday 18 May for our wedding fair.

Entry is free and you’ll get the chance to meet a range of the best local wedding suppliers including florists, chair cover providers and a local DJ to ensure your special day is as amazing as you wished for.

You’ll also have the chance to gain inspiration with a walk round the stunning 13th century Abbey, the former home of Henry VIII, as well as strolling through the picturesque grounds next to the River Thames, and subject to the project being finalised, get to look round our new accommodation including 50 double ensuite bedrooms.

Several of our rooms will be setup so you can get a taste of how stunning they look and fully visualise your special day.

Canapés will be served during the wedding fair and you’ll even receive a complimentary drink on arrival, so what are you waiting for?  Book your place now.

Book an appointment to speak to one of our wedding co-ordinators on the day by telephoning 01628 402589 or emailing

Prior booking is not essential, so if you are passing us, just drop in and come and say hello.


March 2014


Shoppers Help Raise £366 For Sport Relief


A big thank you to everyone who took part or made donations to the Bisham Abbey and Sainsbury’s Sport Relief cycling event on Saturday 22 March at the Marlow based Sainsbury’s supermarket. 

A fantastic £366 was raised by locals and participants alike and the raffle will shortly be drawn to allocate the fantastic prizes.

Thank you to all involved!


March 2014

Gym Weights Area Closure - Friday 24 April to Saturday 3 May 2014

In order to safely complete the building works at Bisham Abbey in May 2014, we regret that we will need to close the downstairs weights section of the gym between Friday 25 April and Saturday 3 May 2014 inclusive.  This closure allows us to work safely on the project whilst still providing a service to the first floor gym.

During this period of closure, the current reception wall will be taken down and the downstairs gym will be extended in size to allow for over £40,000 of new state-of-the-art weights equipment to be placed in the new facility.   This new equipment includes Synergy, lifting platforms and a range of other weight lifting equipment.  This time will also allow for the gym floor to be fully repaired.

Bisham Abbey NSC would like to apologise for any inconvenience this causes gym users, but we very much hope you will enjoy our new facilities once the building works are complete.

Further correspondence will follow in due course.

For more information on this closure, please contact Kerrie Cook,



March 2014

Fab 2014 Multi-Skills Academy and Football Holiday Clinics


When: 10 April 2014 - 9am - 3pm, cost £30.

Where: Bisham Abbey National Sports Centre, Marlow, SL7 1RR

Participants will benefit from:

  • Professional Qualified Coaching
  • Access & opportunities for trials at professional clubs
  • Invitation to FAB Academy 10 week course
  • The opportunity to train with other talented boys / girls
  • Experience Football Coaching & Multi skills sessions

Categories are U6, U7, U8, U9, U10, U11, U12, U13 and Goalkeeper Training. 

Places are extremely limited and therefore booking in advance is essential.

Please bring appropriate footwear (astro trainers), waterproofs, shin pads and sun cream (if necessary).

To register and book a place, click here


March 2014

Royal Visit to England Hockey at Bisham Abbey

The Countess of Wessex visited England Hockey on Tuesday 11 March at its base at Bisham Abbey National Sports Centre, Buckinghamshire, to talk to staff and players from both National teams, and observe a training session as both teams prepare for a summer of huge importance in the international calendar.

The Countess, wife of Prince Edward, the Earl of Wessex, has been Royal Patron of England Hockey since 2007 and is also patron of a number of other sports. HRH will no doubt be keen to see the teams’ progress this summer, as they compete for medals at both the Hockey World Cup in the Netherlands in June, and the Commonwealth Games in Scotland, in August.

During her visit The Countess of Wessex got involved on the hockey pitch, playing with England player Shona McCallin. HRH said afterwards: “I always really enjoyed playing hockey, it’s so much more than just a team sport. Hockey has a great social side and is a thoroughly enjoyable game to both play and watch.”

England Hockey Chief Executive Sally Munday added: “It was brilliant for both staff and players to enjoy a Royal visit, and The Countess of Wessex is clearly very enthusiastic in her support of hockey. Having HRH as our Royal Patron is hugely valuable to our sport. Hockey can be a real inspiration to children across the country, particularly given the recent successes of our National teams, and support from the Royal Family helps us to push that message out.” 


March 2014

Bisham Abbey Sport Relief Involvement


Bisham Abbey National Sports Centre and Sainsbury’s are proud supporters of Sport Relief in 2014.

The combined effort from the two Buckinghamshire based businesses will see members of the local community in Marlow have their chance to jump on board one of the exercise bikes provided at the local Sainsbury’s Marlow store in an attempt to help keep the pedals turning continuously for 8 hours to raise money for Sport Relief.

The charity event is open to all – from those wanting to pedal for just a few minutes – to those who would like a longer spin.  There is no need to book, simply turn up at the Sainsbury’s store in Marlow (14 West Street, Marlow, Buckinghamshire, SL7 2NE) between 9am and 5pm, where the bikes will be located at the rear of the store towards the car park.

The charity event includes a raffle, with all proceeds going to Sport Relief and prizes*including:

  • Signed sports star photos including Denise Lewis and other famous athletes
  • A signed Soccer AM football
  • A signed England Hockey shirt
  • Vouchers for the sailing school
  • A free massage from the Abbey Clinic
  • 1 month's gym membership

*Prizes are subject to change.


March 2014

Competition winner announced

Congratulations to Bisham Abbey’s Name the Café winner, Gary Parsons.  Gary came up with the name, 'Refuel', which was unanimously selected by a committee led by Head of National Centres, Zoe Dixon.

Gary was presented with his bottle of champagne at Bisham Abbey by Partnership Manager, Steve Nelson and will return to see his winning entry above the café after the redevelopment works are complete.

Congratulations Gary!


March 2014

Rush Hockey at Bisham Abbey - Every Thursday 19:30 - 20:30

If you love the rush of a team sport, but never find the time to commit to one, there’s now a game that fits around your lifestyle, Rush Hockey.

Rush hockey tackles participants lack of spare time with shorter games, mitigates fitness worries with smaller pitches and means everyone can get in the team spirit without needing to bring a team with them.  Simply turn up and play.  Bisham Abbey will even provide the equipment.

Rush hockey takes place every Thursday evening, 19:30 – 20:30 and costs just £3.  Simply pay at the sports centre reception and head over to the hockey pitches to start playing.

For more information, contact Matt Edwards,


Flooding at Bisham Abbey NSC 

17 February 2014

Power has now been restored and Bisham Abbey NSC has now re-opened. All gym facilities and workout classes are available for use. We apologise for the inconvenience, and please note that flooding has still restricted the number of car parking bays on site. We will continue to work to resolve these problems and thank our visitors for their patience. 

16 February 2014 

Unfortunately we have had to close our Sports Centre again this evening, due to failure of our back-up generator. We are working to fix the problem and will try to reopen fully as soon as possible. Please continue to check our website and social media networks for updates. 

Thank you for your patience. 

13 February 2014 

Unfortunately Bisham Abbey NSC is currently closed due to flooding and power failure, therefore there will be no access to the public gym, elite facilities or workout classes until we can restore the site and ensure it is suitable for public access. Keep up to date with our progress on Facebook and we will try to re-open as soon as possible. Thank your for your patience. 

February 2014

Hatha Yoga by Candlelight Classes Starting at Bisham Abbey - Thursday 20 February 2014, 8pm.

Bisham Abbey National Sports Centre is delighted to announce the introduction of Hatha Yoga by Candlelight classes.

Starting on Thursday 20 February and running for five weeks, the class is suitable for all levels of ability and flexibility.

Through its creative and fresh sequencing, this form of yoga allows the teacher to help practitioners prevent injury, relive stress, to feel encouraged and be inspired. 

Hatha and Meditation uses asana and pranayama together to relax tensions, soothe the body and relax the mind, culminating in an extended period of meditation. 

Regular yoga participants report better sleep, increased energy levels and muscle tone, relief from muscle pain and stiffness, improved circulation and overall improved general health.

Find out more about this class and all our other classes by contacting Bisham Abbey National Sports Centre on 01628 476911.



Redevelopment Works

Extensive building works to the main sports block and the new accommodation facility have continued throughout December leading up to the Christmas period.  The external building works to the accommodation have continued with the window installation and the final roof finishes nearing completion.

First fix plumbing and electrics are complete, and the buildings works are on schedule despite the inclement weather over Christmas.

The main sports block construction is ongoing with all public areas separated by a decorated permanent hoarding. The new stairwell has been installed and the internal refit of the Hockey, EIS and Canoeing offices are now complete.

Work on the 3G football pitch is also complete and the pitch is in use with our resident football academy, Fab Football.  The changing rooms are in the final stages of completion and will be opening shortly, whilst launch dates for the Desso and grass pitches will follow in due course as the final touches are made to ensure the pitches have the perfect playing surface (despite recent flooding and wet conditions).

Next Steps:

  • Completion of building works to the Reception area by the end of February
  • Gym extension works in the Sports Centre complete by the end of February
  • EIS / Hockey kitchen area works to commence

We thank all site users for their patience during the building works.

If you have a specific question relating to the building works, please contact one of the following:

Steve Nelson, Partnership Manager -

Colin Paddon, Project Manager -



Hospitality Assured       

Hospitality Assured is the quality standard created by the Institute of Hospitality specifically for customer facing businesses.  The process encourages businesses to look at their own operation from the customer’s perspective and see where improvements can be made, whilst scoring the business against its 9-step standard.

In the recent Hospitality Assured audit at Bisham Abbey, the site was ranked with a score of 76.1%, giving it Premier status.  Improvement was made on 5 steps since the last assessment visit, reflecting an excellent achievement overall by all those involved.



Get Fit With a Friend

2014 has seen the roll-out of Bisham Abbey’s ‘Let’s Get Fit Together’ marketing campaign, aimed at encouraging people to try a new workout class or gym programme with a friend, or with the help of the resident gym team.

This campaign features a new function on Facebook to request an appointment for a gym tour, which provides valuable data capture for potential new members It also promotes the online booking options and indicates that ‘exciting changes are coming soon’ to Bisham.  



You Said, We Did...

Following feedback, you said that you wanted improvements to the front of house servery units.

In response to this, we purchased brand new front of house displays to replace existing catering equipment.  This includes a new salad bar and breakfast servers to improve the experience of guests and staff alike.

If you have any queries, please speak to:

Steve Nelson, Partnership Manager


December 2013

The Great Hall Granted Licence for Civil Ceremonies


The beautiful Great Hall at Bisham Abbey NSC is now licenced for Civil Ceremonies for weddings accommodating up to 150 guests.

The licence was granted for this beautiful and historic room allowing civil ceremony weddings to take place with immediate effect.

This is in addition to The Warwick Room, which is also available for civil ceremonies with capacity for up to 90 guests, meaning civil ceremonies both large and small can now be accommodated in style at Bisham Abbey.

To find out more about the historic Great Hall, to request a venue tour or a wedding brochure, please contact our wedding coordinator on 01628 402589.


December 2013

Christmas Parties Underway at Bisham Abbey National Sports Centre


The festive party season is fully underway at Bisham Abbey NSC.  From Michael Jackson cover acts to themed medieval dinner parties with dedicated actors providing stunning entertainment, the Abbey has witnessed some truly fantastic evenings already in 2013, and we've still got some great evenings to come before Christmas and into January.

Christmas parties at Bisham Abbey provide a truly memorable experience, whether it's a themed company evening or a private function, the occasion will be exceptional and truly memorable.

To find out more about Christmas Parties at Bisham Abbey or to check availability for 2014, contact the Events Manager, Andrea Glasgow for more information, or 07738 897260.


December 2013

Bisham Abbey Wedding Fair - Sunday 26 January 2014


Join us at Bisham Abbey on Sunday 26 January 2014 for our 2014 Wedding Fair, organised by Berkshire Wedding Fairs.

The fair opens at 11am and runs until 3pm providing a fantastic opportunity for you to meet a great range of suppliers all under one roof to gain inspiration for your special day. 

Staff will be on hand at the venue to answer any questions you may have and to help you plan your perfect wedding day.

Venue showrounds can be booked on request, enabling you to sample one of Buckinghamshire’s most dramatic venues.

Set on the banks of the River Thames and dating back to the 13th Century, the Abbey has a stunning and intriguing history which includes ownership by Henry VIII.

Admission is free and advance booking is not required but if you do require any further information please contact the organisers on:


Telephone: 07708 249 440 or 07990 711 444

Like us on Facebook:


October 2013
Building Works Update: Major Change across the Site

On arrival to Bisham Abbey this autumn, it would be hard to miss the dramatic changes now taking place across the site. Already the red steelwork has emerged for the Accommodation Block, and re-landscaping of the Sports Centre car park is surging forward. The main phase for the car park works are now completed,doubling the existing capacity.

Meanwhile the Football Pitches are beginning to look completely different than before. To improve the chance of achieving a reasonable grass cover over the following twelve weeks, cool germination grass cultivars are being included in the seed mix and nurtured by fertilisers to accelerate root development. 

Inside the Sports Centre, the enabling and construction works for the main sports block has continued with creation of the new stairwell now underway. The existing lift is being demolished with partitioning works commencing to form the new walls of the café and Reception. Look out for the new displays which will be in the sports centre, giving you further detail of how the new facilities will look.

Forthcoming Building Works:

  • Accommodation Block exterior walls
  • Insulation and stairwell install on main accommodation block
  • Completion of Hockey, EIS and BCU office refurbishment works.
  • Main sports block fit out. Installation of new stairwell

What is a 3G Pitch?

A 3G surface, or ‘third generation’ surface is a long piled tufted carpet that has rubber and sand infill. Predominantly used for football, these surfaces offer maximum comfort underfoot, exceptional ball bounce as well as good ball roll and ball control.

August 2013

Construction begins

The building project has stepped up a gear as works to the main sports block commenced a week earlier than programmed. Café Mojo has now closed and all main catering is now being provided from the Abbey, although sandwiches drinks and snacks can still be purchased from the Sports Centre Reception. Demolition of the existing accommodation block is now complete with the piling mat in place and all associated works complete. Steelwork have now begun to emerge from the ground, to begin to form the new accomodation block which will eventually offer 50 new bedrooms from Spring 2014. 

Inside the Sports Centre, construction has begun on creating the new office space and exercise studio. A small section of the gym floor has been cordoned off whilst works take place. 

Elsewhere on site, demolition works to the pavilion have been completed and piling and associated works are on-going. Pitch works commenced on 1st July with an 8 week preparation period for the grass pitches and 6-12 week bedding in period anticipated (subject to the weather conditions). Works to the synthetic 3G pitch have also commenced with a 12 week install program anticipated. The new coach park is now finished but is being used temporarily by contractors whist the building works continue. This will ensure that noise disruption to local residents is kept to a minimum. 

Car park works are also expected to begin on 28th August 2013. This will entail a change to the entrance to the Sports Centre car park, and changes to access routes. These works may temporarily result in part closure of some car parking spaces, but alternative parking is available in the undercover car park and around the Abbey during this time. Work is expected to take three weeks (approximately) for completion.

July 2013

Cafe Mojo Relocation

From Saturday 6th July, Cafe Mojo will be temporarily re-located to the Abbey as building works begin in the Sports Centre. There will continue to be a range of hot and cold food and drink options available. The building works will thereafter cause temporary closure to the lift and a section of the gym floor (w/c 15th July). 

Thank you for your patience whilst this exciting transformation of Bisham Abbey National Sports Centre continues. Assistance for all those with accessibility needs can be requested from Reception during this period. If you have any queries or concerns, please speak to a member of staff. 

June 2013

Bisham Abbey Building Works 2013 - 2014

Work has now begun to transform the facilities available at the Bisham Abbey National Sport Centre. As part of a £6million redevelopment, The improvements will bring the outdated accommodation block into the 21st century, with 50 new high-quality double rooms and associated catering facilities, replacement of an existing grass pitch with an artificial grass pitch, redevelopment of 2 existing grass pitches and provision of a new fitness studio, larger gym floor and a dedicated changing pavilion. These improvements will help to meet the growing demand for year-round sport by the Centre’s many users.

Demolition has been completed of the old accommodation building on the site, as well as introduction of a revised parking and traffic plan around existing car parks.

In the coming weeks, work will begin on the following:

  • Clearing of the old accommodation block following demolition
  • Gym partitioning to be installed
  • Removal of Café Mojo (temporarily replaced in the Abbey building)
  • Development of  a new fitness studio and extended gym space
  • Removal of the lift (please speak with Reception if you have any access requirements)

Regular updates will be provided via our e-newsletter and on-site newsletter. If you are a current member or regularly use the facilities, please ensure that we have your email address to that we can keep you informed.

March 2013
Major Redevelopment Plans Announced

Sport England’s improvement plans for Bisham Abbey have been granted full planning permission by local councillors. The improvements will bring the outdated accommodation block into the 21st century with 50 new high-quality double rooms with associated catering facilities, replace an existing grass pitch with an artificial grass pitch, redevelop 2 exiting grass pitches and provide a dedicated changing pavilion for these which will help meet the growing demand for year-round sport by the Centre’s many users. Work is expected to commence in April 2013.

March 2013

Clay Tennis Courts - Now Open

After temporary winter closure, the clay tennis courts are now open again. We apologise for the inconvenience and thank you for your patience. To find out how to book our indoor courts, please visit:

October 2012

Bisham Abbey set for 21st Century Makeover

The world-leading sports facilities at Bisham Abbey, where more than 30 British Olympic medalists trained for London 2012 are set to get even better if Sport England’s improvement plans are approved by local councillors.


These athletes won five gold medals – so if Bisham Abbey National Sports Centre was a country, it would have finished 16th in the medal table at London 2012. It is also home to our men’s and women’s hockey teams as well as being a thriving community sports centre – with around 180,000 visits to play sport by local people every year. More than 70% of those who visit Bisham are community users.

Now Sport England has revealed plans to make further improvements, bringing the outdated accommodation block into the 21st century with 50 new high-quality double rooms and replacing an existing grass pitch with an artificial grass pitch that will be help meet the growing demand for year-round sport by the centre’s many users.

Sport England Property Director, Charles Johnston, said: “These improvements are part of our plans to ensure Bisham remains at the forefront of sporting excellence for both grassroots participants and elite athletes. We have consulted extensively prior to submitting our proposals and I’m delighted to say that so far we have had around 50 supportive letters from local people. Bisham is very much part of the community of Marlow, so having the support of local people is very important to us.”

A planning application submitted by Serco, which manages Bisham Abbey on behalf of Sport England, also includes proposals to improve the landscaping and habitat at Bisham as well as a small increase in parking provision at the site to improve traffic management, so that users no longer have to park on grass verges.

Serco was contracted last year for a period of 15 years to run and manage two key National Sports Centres, including Bisham Abbey, on behalf of Sport England.

Keith Thomas, Director, Leisure, Serco said, “Bisham Abbey is the home of sports training for Olympic and Paralympic athletes, professional sportsmen and women and community users alike. The planned improvements will bring yet another dimension to the facilities we can provide on behalf of Sport England cementing Bisham as a key home for sports training and re-establishing the facility as a ‘World Class’ training venue.”

The cost of the proposed improvements of around £6 million would be met through Sport England National Lottery funding.

October 2012

Bisham Abbey Open Day - 21st October

Bisham Abbey National Sport Centre will be offering visitors of all ages the opportunity to try a different sport at an Open Day on Sunday 21 October, from 10:00 - 16:00. The Sports Centre offers a wide range of sporting activities to enjoy, from tennis to hockey, sailing to golf. Children's activities will also be on offer.


Taster Sessions for adults and juniors will include:

•         Hockey
•         Tennis
•         Football
•         Golf
•         Angling
•         Squash
•         Racketball
•         Rowing

Bisham Abbey also offers a fully equipped, air conditioned gym with state of the art equipment and free parking. Visitors will be able to speak to a personal instructor, receive a gym tour, learn how to get more from a workout, discover great value gym membership offers and try a taster workout class in Spin or Kettle Bells. If you are an existing member, you can also bring a friend for free to try out the gym or a new class*.

We look forward to seeing you!

*Terms and conditions apply. Non-member must register. Offer applicable on 21 October 2012 only.

February 2012

Football League Exit Trials

The Football League exit trials are held every year in the February half-term and according to the Football League's head of youth development, former Wolves manager Graham Hawkins, they are becoming bigger and bigger every year. This year the trials came to bisham Abbey on the 17th February 2012.


The trials which are almost a decade old, were once only open to players attached to officially recognised academies but for the last three years those belonging to a club's centre of excellence have been eligible as well. They take place over three days at Bisham Abbey, Lilleshall and, finally, Leeds, with approx. 100 boys attending each day. Every venue hosts four trial games, with the intention that all players have at least an hour to impress in his chosen position.

As the scouts started to arrive, the tension at Bisham Abbey reached its peak as the boys queued up waiting to register in the Warwick room they came from all levels of the Football League but also from universities and private academies. But for every scout that attended each one will have had a different objectives and agenda.

Unfortunately there are no official stats available about how many players have been signed by a club after being spotted at an exit trial. However, Hawkins and the Football League's hardworking youth development business manager Jim Briden estimate that 55% of the players at last year's trials had contact with another club.

The trials cost around £15,000. Despite the arguments about the merits of youth systems and academy football, who suggest that it is under-funded and not producing enough players, the intention behind the exit trials is clearly applaudible.

In an era when football is a wealthy global business, people can be reduced to statistics, the exit trials are an example of football's human face. As Hawkins said to me with great sincerity: "The care and welfare of the players is paramount."

Unfortunately for many of the hopefuls at Bisham Abbey the exit trials will be another step as they slip further away from their dream of playing professionally. But for perhaps just a handful of those lucky few picked up then it will all have been worth it and we have our fingers firmly crossed!

January 2012

Bisham Abbey FAB Academy director brings home the trophies!!

The first ever Asian Football Awards supported by The FA and Kick It Out, with Sporting Equals as its legacy partner saw leading figures come out to support the glitzy event at the home of football, Wembley Stadium.


Guests for this event included David Bernstein (FA Chairman), Paul Elliot, Graham Le Saux, Piara Powar, Mihir Bose, Gurinder Chadha (Bend It Like Beckham) and award winners Michael Chopra and Manish Bhasin… and near a little town called Marlow the director of FAB Academy at Bisham Abbey Nas Bashir!!

Nas Bashir, director of FAB Academy (based at Bisham Abbey National Sports Centre) was one of the selected representatives who had the privilege of being invited to attend the event due to his nomination for Coach of the Year award.

Unfortunately for his brother, Nas was unable to attend, so in his absence and amongst the wash of suits, his brother Tas had to collect the award on his behalf with FAB academy’s head coach Chris Ayres. The first call of the night was for ‘coach of the year’ award so Tas was on strict instructions to behave himself and had to watch whilst Chris was merrily enjoying the occasion swigging champagne!!!! With the tip off of having to prepare a speech before the day, hopes were high and the troublesome two were not disappointed when Nas’s name was read out as the Winner against his four contenders. However despite indulging in a particularly lavish three course meal amongst the other 300 guests at the impressive Wembley stadium, Tas was unable to relax straight away as he was whisked off to do a press interview after collecting the award. 

The AFA managed to engage with key representatives of those individuals working hard to engage with their communities and develop Asians within the game. The event brought together representatives of clubs and organisations such as Arsenal, Chelsea, Tottenham Hotspurs, Aston Villa, QPR, Wolves, Charlton, Liverpool, The PFA and many leading Asian organisations. Nas Bashir was nominated for the Coach of the year award namely for all his hard work with the FAB Football Academy at Bisham Abbey and we are delighted he was recognised for all his hard work and able to pick up the award on the night.

Imran Hassan Co-Founder Asian Football Awards "It was really pleasing seeing so many key figures supporting and enjoying the awards, but the hard work begins now in our legacy programme."

The Asian Football Awards are due to be aired on Sony Entertainment Network Fri 10th Feb 2012. Sky Channel 782 and it sounds as if a few beers in thanks are definitely due between the brothers!!

Congratulations to Nas Bashir FAB Academy Bisham Abbey director for this fantastic achievement …and also perhaps to his brothers steel nerves for collecting the award on his behalf!

January 2012

Sailing School receives Royal visit at London Boat Show

During a visit to the Tullett Prebon London Boat Show at Excel on Wednesday 11 January HRH The Royal Princess Anne stopped and chatted to Roy May and Tom Sowerby of local business Bisham Abbey Sailing and Navigation School on the School’s stand.


The School has been exhibiting at the Boat Show for some 17 years and Her Royal Highness was interested in all the activities running at the School, particularly dinghy sailing for youngsters and to hear that the School has been training some of the employees working on the Olympic site in Stratford in water safety. 

Being the year of the Queen’s Golden Jubilee, Her Royal Highness was also intrigued to hear that the Duke of Edinburgh had visited the School at Bisham Abbey National Sports Centre during the Queen’s Silver Jubilee celebrations in 2002.

For Further details on the Bisham Abbey Sailing school please see their page on this website.

December 2011

Bisham Abbey Prime Timers Celebrate in style!

Bisham Abbey members celebrated in style on 16th December as they were waited on hand and foot in the beautiful 12th Century Abbey for a Christmas Luncheon.


Jane Mannerings (Bisham Abbey personal trainer) looked very festive dressed all in red as she greeted her guests and she proved to be a stunning host to her dedicated group of 20 or so ‘Prime Timers’ members who attended the Christmas lunch she had organised for them.

The group were met by Jane on arrival at the Abbey and escorted to the Margaret Dickinson Lounge, overlooking the River Thames where a table fit for Father Christmas awaited them!

Complete with silver candelabras and Christmas crackers, the jolly group exchanged token gifts and enjoyed a sumptuous 3 course meal served by the superb Bisham Abbey catering team.

Bisham Abbey Prime timers club offers two weekly sessions for the over 50’s to help the community get more active with age, it also offers the opportunity for weekly health checks.

Jane Mannerings has been running the sessions for over a year now and her popularity and dedication to the group has seen her class numbers soar. The group partake in one gym session and one exercise class per week in a relaxed and friendly atmosphere. It is a great opportunity for members to not only keep fit and active, but also have the opportunity to socialise and make friends with people of the same age.

…But December 16th was a time for frivolity and not hard work! So as the group tucked into their Christmas puds, the gym was the last thing on their minds!! And I’m sure Jane was only to keen to remind them they’d have to work extra hard in the New Year to work it all off!!

November 2011

Young Ambassadors Conference at Bisham Abbey

Dozens of teenagers from every secondary school in Berkshire will kicked off a major sporting event at Bisham Abbey in November aimed at encouraging youngsters to get more involved in competitive sport. Bisham Abbey was proud to welcome One hundred and twenty Young Ambassadors aged 16 to 18 officially to launch the Berkshire School Games at the venue.


The Berkshire School Games actually take place next year but the Young Ambassadors were keen to promote them now as part of their brief to spread the word and encourage more people of all ages to get involved in sport as players, volunteers, officials or in other supporting roles like announcers or sports reporters. As part of Bisham Abbey and sport England’s objectives ‘Grow, Sustain and Excel’ this conference went a long way to contributing towards this vision.

The School Games are part of the Government’s initiative to encourage more competitive sport in schools. The scheme has been developed to put sport on the national agenda as the country gears up for the 2012 Olympics and Paralympic Games in London.

The Berkshire Games will showcase sports including athletics, hockey, badminton, netball, handball and cricket, with inclusive events for young disabled people including Boccia, new age kurling, swimming and sports hall athletics. The local rounds of the School Games start this term with inter school competitions. Next year, pupils from Berkshire’s winning teams in these competitions will face each other at Olympic and Paralympic-style multi-sports events being held at Bradfield College in April and then in June in Windsor and Eton.

The School Games will initially run for three years and is being pioneered locally by the newly formed Local Organising Committee, chaired by Derek Peaple of Park House School in Newbury. Their key role in organising and supporting the delivery of the Games was one of the topics discussed by the 120 Young Ambassadors that attended Bisham Abbey at the conference. They also get had the opportunity to meet Paralympic Gold Medallist Danny Crates and reflected on how they could effectively publicise the importance of sport and physical activity to their peers.

Derek Peaple, Head of Park House School and Sports College in Newbury and Chair of the Local Organising Committee for the School Games in Berkshire, said: “Given the central role that these Young Ambassadors will play in the delivery of next year’s School Games, it is very fitting that we are launching them at the Conference at Bisham Abbey.”

The Conference at the National Sports Centre, Bisham Abbey, was organised by the Berkshire School Games Organisers with input from representatives of the Committee organising the Games in Berkshire ans supported by the team onsite at Bisham.

Mark Lawrie, Chief Executive of Berkshire County Sports Partnership, said: “The Berkshire School Games offer a fantastic opportunity for the organisations that provide sport in the county to celebrate the achievements of young people in sport and to get even more young people involved in school and community sport in the future.”

The team at Bisham Abbey were delighted to be involved in the event and offer their support with the use of the venue and hope this went some way to motivating and inspiring them to achieve their goals.

Mike Diaper, Director of Youth and Communities at Sport England, who are investing up to £35 million of National Lottery funding for the School Games, said: “The School Games will help to inspire a generation of young people to get involved in competitive sport. Alongside our Olympic legacy programme, Places People Play, this will ensure we build a lasting sporting legacy beyond next year’s Olympic and Paralympic Games.”

October 2011

Inter schools Hockey Tournament at Bisham Abbey

Monday October 17th saw another great day in developing community relationships between Bisham Abbey and the local schools of Berkshire. A whirlwind of excitement and anticipation surrounded the event and it was thrilling to see the student’s enthusiasm and delight at the opportunity of training in such a prestigious venue.


The annual inter-schools hockey tournament involves students from Year 5 and 6 from the local area. In total the number of students involved in the event at Bisham Abbey reached approximately 140 with another 20 members of staff who also came along to help support on the day.

Bisham Abbey kindly agreed to host the event and give the children the experience, and the opportunity to use the same training facilities and pitch as both the men’s and ladies G.B. teams who regularly train on Astroturf at the venue.

Leaders from Furze Platt Senior School helped organise and officiate this exciting tournament and winners from both the boys and girls event will be being invited to play again in the county finals at the beginning of 2012.

We hope that we may continue to develop this essential integration between the elite and the community and look to develop this important relationship. We look forward to further future events of this nature and were happy we were able to support the advancement of these young students enthusiasm and passion for sport.

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September 2011

Jatta VGS, Norweigen School at Bisham Abbey

The Norwegian school group ‘Jatta VGS’ came to Bisham Abbey this month for an eight night, multi sports residential training camp this month.


The sports college from Norway brought over a huge group of 58 students, the majority of whom were resident at Bisham Abbey for the duration of their stay, with the overflow of the group staying at Longridge activity centre a few minutes down the road from the abbey.

The pupils who were delighted with the unseasonal heat wave they managed to catch throughout their stay (!) were also extremely impressed by Bisham Abbey and the quality of the facilities on offer at the venue.

During their stay the pupils received football, rugby, hockey and tennis coaching, using high quality coaches sourced through the staff at Bisham Abbey. They did however take some time out with a couple of trips into London to experience the standard tourist trails and to watch a couple of professional football matches, before competing in their own against the Bisham Abbey Football Academy.

The team who have already expressed their desire to return next year were a fantastic group of individual who were a pleasure to host and we hope we can look forward to welcoming them back again next year!

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August 2011

Bisham Abbey Tennis Success!

Three pupils of the WIN Tennis Academy based at Bisham Abbey National Sports Centre - have tasted elite success in this year’s AEGON Junior National Championships and the HSBC Road to Wimbledon Finals.


AEGON is one of the UK’s most prestigious junior events, which has seen the like of Andy Murray fight his way to success, and now 15-year-old Harriet Dart and 16-year-old Josh Page look set for similar success. Harriet claimed both the U16 Girls Singles and Doubles titles, while Josh walked away U16 Boys Singles Champion. Success elsewhere in the HSBC Road to Wimbledon Finals saw the 14-year-old Hannah Brent completed a hat-trick of success for WIN by claiming the Girls Singles title.

The three pupils have been based at Bisham Abbey for three years now training with the High performance WIN Tennis Academy. The WIN Tennis Academy is accredited by the LTA as an International High Performance Centre and strives to develop young tennis players to the highest standard, with the aim of creating tennis champions.

On Harriet and Josh’s success, Head of WIN Academies, Mike Walker, said:

"I am delighted that Harriet and Josh have won the u/16 titles at the AEGON Junior National Championships – they are both valued members of the Win Tennis Academy programme and we have seen them grow into self-assured and mature individuals. They have consistently shown that they are totally committed to improving their tennis and fitness, culminating in these fantastic results.

“We have an excellent team of coaches and staff who work extremely hard with our player’s day in, day out. They are dedicated to giving them the tools and confidence to achieve their ambitions and it is a tribute to them that we have two great examples in Harriet and Josh of what can be achieved when you have the desire and determination to succeed.”

Great News for our talent development at Bisham Abbey and big congratulation to the three young competitors!

July 2011

Community meets Elite athletes

Wednesday 20th July saw a fantastic interaction between the local community and Elite sportsmen at Bisham Abbey National Sports Centre.


Cowplain community school pupils from years 8and 10 had the exciting opportunity to visit Bisham Abbey earlier this month. The group of approx. 40 pupils and a small collection of staff arrived early in the morning to a 30 minute site tour with a member of Bisham Abbey’s team. They were given an information pack on arrival to help guide them through the day including some details about Bisham Abbey, the National Centres and Sport England.

They then had the unique experience of being invited into the Physiology lab at the English Institute of Sports (EIS) performance centre at Bisham Abbey. They were introduced to Jean Watson, Head of operations in EIS at Bisham Abbey who gave them a tour of the facilities and educated them on the work undertaken by the staff of the EIS and their role in elite development. Furthermore they were then given the privilege of being taken into the EIS high performance gym with Jean where they were able to indulge in Q&A.

The large school group breaked for lunch in the Great Hall alongside England and Korea’s men’s Hockey squads. After which they were permitted to watch England Hockey and Korea in action as they took each other on in what was the  second of three matches which they went on to play during their training camp at Bisham.

Their day ended with a 30 minute presentation from Kerrie Cook sales Manager at Bisham abbey on the role of the National Sports Centres and Bisham Abbey. After a brief Q&A They were then able to partake in two hours of facility hire of their choice, the school brought their own equipment with them and opted for Tennis and Football to bring the day to a close.

The team received some fantastic feedback following the tour from the pupils and staff alike-

‘Brilliant trip, fantastic grounds’

‘The trip was amazing, I would definately go again’

‘I loved it and the food was amazing’

‘Very interesting, I loved it’

‘It was excellent, thank you’

July 2011

Egypt V England Hockey

The Egyptians men’s Hockey team took advantage of the new astro turf at Bisham Abbey this month. The group, who were resident at the National Sports Centre for 5 nights, were also subject to two gruelling matches against the home GB team.


England’s men gave the visiting team a shock with their skillfull play during the first match and took the Egyptian team down 3 – 1, however they soon began to prove themselves a worthy contestant by their draw of 3-3  only a short few days later in the last of two matches. Despite the result it was obvious that the hosts were unfortunate not to win having enjoyed the better of the chances throughout the match.

Afterwards, Team Manager Andy Halliday said, “We struggled to break them down...  They sat men behind the ball and we didn’t quite have enough about us to get through.”

England’s players now prepare for next week’s London Cup in Chiswick with hundreds of school children set to cheer them on against Belgium later in the month as part of Schools Day.

July 2011

Olympic Festival

As part of the 2012 Cultural Olympiad Open Weekend celebrations, the Wycombe Community Festival took place on Saturday 23rd July, from 1pm to 7pm, on the Rye in High Wycombe.


The festival provided a free family fun day open to everyone to enjoy the variety of sporting taster sessions available and vibrant performances, colourful parades and also to learn about the types of sports and activities happening within their local area that they could get involved with. The event also provided a platform to showcase local young musical talent, with performances by visiting professional artists. The activities planned will encourage the community to take part in dancing, sporting activities and generally celebrating diverse cultures.

Bisham abbey was proud to not only be a part of this event, but also contribute towards the success of this spectacular festival. The team from Bisham abbey were delighted by the enthusiasm and interest of the general public, the two paddle ergo’s which were organised to be brought down for the day provided the opportunity for the public to have a taste of a new sport and proved to be a real hit.

Business development manager Claire Broomby commented;

“I was amazed by the enthusiasm and response, the ergo’s weren’t vacant all day, in fact at several points during the day there was not only a queue, but a small crowd cheering the participants along! It was fantastic to see the athletes inspiring the community!”

This was undoubtedly enhanced by the guidance, coaching and commitment of the four British Canoe Union athletes who also attended with the Bisham team and who offered encouragement and tips for those willing to participate. British Canoe Union athletes Hayleigh Mason, Ed Rutherford, Kristian Reeves and Tom Hide provided not only a fantastic role model for the younger participants throughout the day but also an excellent reflection on their commitment to their sport and willingness to give back to the community. The team were also supported by Bisham Abbey’s WIN tennis High performance Tennis Academy who also supported the team with free tennis taster sessions throughout the day.

The Bisham abbey team produced a ‘Top Gear’ style leader board which represented the fastest time to 100 metres for various age groups. This provided a competitive element to the taster sessions and led to several members of the public coming back for a second and third go! The fastest time of the day (excluding the athletes!!) was a phenomenal 17.6 seconds by Matt who consequently won the prize of a 3 month membership at Bisham Abbey.

All proceeds from the day will go towards a new legacy project endorsed by Sir Steve Redgrave. It will provide people throughout Buckinghamshire with the opportunity to try a large variety of Olympic and Paralympic sports within local clubs and facilities. The project has been recognised by the London 2012 Olympic committee, who granted it the 2012 inspire mark status.

Gym Refurbishment

The gym, located in the sports centre has recently undergone a £300,000 refurbishment, with investment being made in state of the art gym equipment from supplier Life Fitness.  New equipment includes treadmills, cross-trainers, spinning bikes, Power Plates and an extensive free weights area.

New Website

Bisham Abbey has launched it's new website.  Not only have we had a visual overhaul, but we're also adding in some great new features including a new online bookings system and online membership sign-up.

If you have any feedback on the new site, please contact us.



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