REFUGEES arriving in Monmouthshire from overseas will now be able to claim free membership of leisure centres in the county.

Monmouthshire County Council has announced that it is giving all refugees living in the county six months’ free membership of its leisure centres in a move to benefit their wellbeing.

The news comes on World Refugee Day (June 20), but the offer can be claimed at any time within a year of arrival in the UK.

The scheme is available to those who have fled the war in Ukraine along with all other international refugees who have been granted refugee or asylum status by the UK Government.

The MonLife Active membership includes access to the leisure facilities in Abergavenny, Chepstow, Monmouth and Caldicot, as well as a free personalised fitness plans and a weekly 30-minute Body Blitz session. 

Refugees are also entitled to a free course of swimming lessons (subject to availability).

More details about MonLife memberships are available here

Monmouthshire County Council’s cabinet member for equalities and engagement, Catherine Fookes, commented: “Over the past year the number of people forced to flee conflict, violence, human rights violations and persecution has grown alarmingly.

"We’re all aware of the situation in Ukraine, but we are not blind to the plight of many others forced to flee their homes and see sanctuary around the globe.

"Physical activity plays a significant role in maintaining wellbeing and on World Refugee Day I’m delighted to be able to extend the offer of leisure centre membership to all refugees in Monmouthshire.”