Therme Appoints UK CEO as Therme Manchester Gets Planning Approval

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The new design for Therme Manchester has received unanimous approval from Trafford Council’s planning committee. The updated scheme features a pavilion-style concept immersed and enveloped in a natural landscape. The decision coincides with the appointment of Professor David Russell as the first UK-based CEO of Therme Group UK and demonstrates a shift in Therme’s focus from design and planning to delivery. 

With 30 years of experience in delivering large-scale projects, Professor Russell has been involved in major ventures around the world including the London 2012 Summer Olympics, The Rugby World Cup in Japan 2019 and the $8 billion Expo 2020 in Dubai.
Russell takes up the role after a successful 3-year tenure as CEO of a joint venture between Russell Partnership Collection, the UK’s largest food, nutrition, and technology consultancy, and Therme Group.

Russell will be supported by Richard Land, Chief Development Officer of Therme UK, who has successfully spearheaded the planning process, and James Mark who has been a leading part of Therme UK’s senior team since the project began. Mr Mark now takes up the role of Chief Strategy Officer for Therme UK, with a focus on developing further city-based wellbeing resorts across the UK. 

“Therme Manchester will be the UK’s first city-based wellbeing resort. Our ambition is to make a positive difference in millions of people’s lives whilst creating a new wave in urban living,”

Prof. David Russell, CEO, Therme Group UK.

An artist's impression of Therme Manchester's interior.

As much as offering a fun and relaxing day out, the Therme Manchester experience is designed to benefit mental and physical health. Attractions include large family and adults-only zones with swimming pools, slides, warm water lagoons and multi-sensorial saunas. Alongside this, elements such as water-based fitness classes, evidence-based wellness therapies, botanical gardens, immersive art, urban farms and educational activities create an integrated wellbeing concept for all ages. 

The resort is forecast to contribute over £4.5 billion to the UK economy, according to an independent PwC study, with most of the positive impact in the Greater Manchester area.

“After five years working in partnership with Therme, we are delighted to hear planning permission has been approved for this incredible, high-quality health and wellbeing resort in Trafford City. We’re looking forward to working closely with the whole of the Therme team to deliver something truly unique and iconic in the UK, that is not only world-leading for health and wellbeing, but will also create a significant number of new jobs and have a huge positive economic impact for North West England.”

James Whittaker, Executive Director – Development at Peel L&P.

“I am very pleased that the planning committee supported this application. This wellbeing resort is a huge £250m leisure development which is the first of its kind in the country and we are delighted it is being built here in Trafford. The resort will attract millions of visitors each year and will add significantly to the local economy during construction and once operational. It will also create more than 1,500 person-years of construction jobs and 600 permanent full-time jobs. The development sits a short walk from the latest Metrolink extension and supports several of our key commitments by improving health and wellbeing, providing connectivity for cyclists and pedestrians, creating a new public realm, and regenerating a vacant brownfield site in a sustainable location.”

Cllr Tom Ross, Leader of Trafford Council.

The £250 million construction is set to commence later this year, with an estimated duration of 24 months for completion.

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