Improvements to Ministry of fitness

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How we are making Ministry of Fitness better for our members

The last 2 years have been quite 'challenging'

Looking back on my Facebook memories there’s a lot of things that pop up that remind me what a stressful time lockdown was and how we very nearly didn’t reopen.

When Curtis and I opened the gym in 2010 we wanted to change the way that gyms operated and make it more customer focussed.  

The gym industry was stagnant on the one hand you had commercial fitness type gyms that were mainly cardio and no decent free weights and on the other you had dirty and run down hardcore gyms that catered for people that liked to lift but not much else.

Our plan was to bring together the best bits of both of these types and make Ministry of Fitness more in line with the big American style gyms.

We succeeded and created something not seen in Bristol before

Over the last 12 years we have continued to lead the way in customer service so that our members get the best facilities to transform their bodies.


When we reopened after lockdown we changed our business model with a £70,000 refit:


  • Extending the mezzanine floor
  • Complete rebuild of the changing rooms
  • Full studio refit
  • New paint job for the whole building
  • New equipment
  • Myzone integration
  • New classes including more small group coaching

We are still the only gym in Bristol to offer small group Personal Training included in your membership at the price point we have set.

It’s now time to look forward to the next 2 years and how we can improve the gym for you

Stage 1 - Upgrades to Membership Benefits

All of our memberships will now come with the following benefits

  • 12 x VIP passes to bring your friends along – worth £120 – So you can bring a friend to motivate you
  • 12 x monthly recipe books with 30 recipes  –  worth £84 – So you can eat smarter
  • 3 x Detailed Body Scans to show your body fat, muscle and water composition – worth £30


  • 1 x Flexible Eating Plan tailored to your calories and macros to help you eat smarter and understand food better – worth £97
  • 1 x 1 hour consultation with a qualified nutritionist or coach to discuss how to achieve your goals easier – worth £50
  • 4 x Small group PT sessions per month (these are already in place) to improve your form and technique – worth £40
  • 3 months free use of our coaching app to get new ideas for your training (already in place for new members when they join) – worth £12

For more details on these please watch the video or check out our social media

Stage 2 - Upgrades to the Gym and equipment

Previously we have done big equipment purchases all in one go – in 2015 we invested £40k back into the gym with a large kit upgrade.  This is not a viable option with today’s financial climate so we will be updating equipment a piece at a time over the next 2 years

We recently conducted a poll of our members on social media asking what we did well, what not so well and what they’d like to see added to our equipment.

    • The feedback from our members has allowed us to know where to focus our spending.
    • More details will be released as we secure the purchases but a Pendulum Squat will be the first new addition due in late May for delivery.
    • The initial focus will be on the main gym and power room area to increase the quality of free weights workouts
    • The gym will continue to improve the offerings in the classes under the guidance of our coaches

Stage 3 - Changes to how memberships are administered

The way we administer memberships is changing slightly to help us  facilitate the member benefits which will repeat every 12 months.

  • Current membership contract – 12 months then rolling month by month


  • New contract – 12 months then re-sign for 12 months


I’ve had many arguments with big commercial gyms before I opened Ministry when I asked to leave and they tried to force me to pay a number of extra months.  Curtis and I were adamant that Ministry would not enforce these strong arm tactics with our members.

Even though the membership is a 12 month contract You can still cancel with 30 days notice at any time.  We now have a form on our website that will make sure any request is logged and dealt with within 5 working days as we found that some emails were going into the spam file and we didn’t see them.

The change is only so we can manage the memberships and administer the benefits more easily.

Stage 4 - Changes to some membership rates

Over the last 3 years our costs have increased dramatically, suppliers, staffing, services, utilities are all much higher now than 3 years ago.

As a result we are raising some memberships to allow us to fund these improvements and to make sure the business continues to provide the excellent service it currently does.

Membership Prices

  • Day Pass – Current £8 -> New £10
  • M12 (Yearly Upfront) – Current £399 -> no change
  • M1 (12 payments option) – Current £40 -> New £45
  • M1 Junior (16-18) – Current £19 no change
  • M1 Junior (Under 16) – Current £19 -> New FREE

If you are currently a monthly paying member and want to switch the to M12 which is a one off fee for the year please let us know

Juniors under 16 will now be completely free. We want to encourage young people to get into exercise and enjoy working out and for it not to be a financial burden on their parents to encourage this. They must always be accompanied by a full adult member and be well behaved at all times.  

These changes will take place as follows

  • 1st May – New members and all day passes – £45 monthly £10 day pass
  • 1st June – M1 members currently at £40 -> £45 monthly
  • 1st July onwards – M1S members – your discount from lockdown will remain in place until it expires then will be staggered to £40 for one month and then £45

I realise that for members currently paying the discounted rate of £30 this will be a big jump.  We promised members who supported us through lockdown that we would repay them in full via a £10 monthly discount for however long it took. The timing of this rise and the end of that discount is not perfect which is why we are giving an extra £5 discount for 1 month.

I appreciate that not everyone will be happy

Price rises are never a popular subject.  However we are not in the business of just putting up prices every year like most big gyms.  Every time we raise the memberships we follow that with improvements to the gym and the services we offer our members.

The member benefits we have put in place will give back nearly £400 of value to your membership and ultimately help you get the body you want while developing our great community.

It is our goal to be the best gym in the country and provide the absolute best service to our members so that they can get in the best shape of their lives

  • We are currently at 87% of our capacity for our self imposed member cap.  Once we are full we will close our gym to new members to prevent overcrowding.
  • The new member benefits we are putting in place are not provided by ANY OTHER GYM for the price we are charging.
  • The improvements we are putting in place will mean that by being a Ministry member you have access to incredible kit, expert coaching and professional nutritionists, ALL INCLUDED IN YOUR MEMBERSHIP

If you wish to discuss any of the points raised in this message please email me at the gym

Tom Blackman