Leisure centres in Croydon are opening their doors for people to charge their phones, take showers and keep warm as temperatures drop and energy bills rise this winter.

Waddon Leisure Centre and Ashburton Hall, will open as ‘warm spaces’ to help those struggling in the cost of living crisis.

Residents will have access to free WiFi, as well as being able to charge their electronic devices and even have a hot shower.

There will also be free tea, coffee and biscuits provided.

On Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays Waddon will open from 1-3pm, while Ashburton Hall will be open on Tuesdays and Thursdays from 12-2pm.

The leisure centres are run by GLL on behalf of Croydon Council and the warm spaces will be hosted in the cafes.

The initiative starts today (Monday, November 28) and will run all winter.

Earlier this month the government announced phase three of its Household Support Fund for councils has been extended, and will now run until March 2023.

This came with £500 million of extra funding for local authorities to support vulnerable households.

Croydon Council has so far distributed £6m through the government fund.

The authority says this has helped nearly 67,000 people since October 2021.

In the summer, Croydon mayor Jason Perry said: “I know that families and households across Croydon are feeling the squeeze from current cost of living increases, which is why it is important we can support our most vulnerable residents through this difficult time with a range of financial support.

“The council will be working with all our partners to make sure household support funding goes directly to those who need it most, including looking after our elderly residents through rising fuel costs and helping families with young children.”