MEMBERS of Bannatyne Fitness in Blackpool can now cancel their memberships should their circumstances change after a ruling that their contracts were unfair.
The national chain is one of three to be investigated by the Office of Fair Trading (OFT), which has now agreed to make their contract terms more transparent and give members better cancellation rights.
Bannatyne Fitness Limited, David Lloyd Leisure Limited and Fitness First Clubs Limited, which between them have almost one million members and worked with the OFT during its investigation, will allow extended rights for members to cancel their gym contract early if they lose their jobs or suffer an injury, making their attendance or payment to the gym difficult.
New members will also be told of their cancellation rights as part of the sales process.
The OFT investigation was launched after a High Court ruling against a gym membership company found lengthy gym memberships could be unfair and locked people in without proper cancellation rights when their circumstances changed.
Other gym companies are currently being investigated.
A spokesman for Bannatyne Group said: “We have fully cooperated with the OFT whole scale review of this issue. Bannatyne Health Clubs are uniformly operating under contracts that meet the OFT recommendations with regard to length of contracts and provisions relating to cancellation due to illness.
“As a large employer, the company makes a significant contribution to the economy and we feel that the conclusion of the OFT investigation will allow us to carry on our business with the full confidence that our model is fair and reasonable.”