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 0303 123 1702

Allerdale Borough Council,
Allerdale House,
Workington,
Cumbria,
CA14 3YJ

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Potential sites revealed for new leisure centre in Workington

30 August 2013

Three potential options and sites for a new £9 million swimming pool and leisure centre in Workington have been revealed by Allerdale Borough Council.

Now residents and leisure centre users are invited to join the second stage of a public consultation exercise to give their views on each of the proposed schemes.

The three options are:

  • A swimming pool and leisure centre at Moorclose, on the site of Workington’s existing leisure centre
  • A swimming pool and leisure centre at Brow Top in the town centre
  • A swimming pool, leisure centre and family entertainment complex at Brow Top in the town centre.

The consultation starts today [Friday 30 August 2013] with survey forms available online, and in all the Council’s leisure centres. The public will also be able to find out more about the different options at roadshows which will be held in the town centre and at the existing leisure centre at Moorclose in September.

Councillor Alan Smith, Leader of Allerdale Borough Council, said: “This is one of the most important developments in the town for many years and our aim is to create a high quality facility which is used by people across the borough and beyond. As part of the Council’s commitment to sports, art and leisure, we promised to deliver a new sporting facility in Workington and it’s brilliant to see these plans getting closer to completion.

“Workington Leisure Centre was built around 40 years ago – it is out of date, expensive to run, with poor energy efficiency and a limited lifespan. The new swimming pool and leisure centre will be far more cost effective, contain facilities the community has told us it wants, and will be built to very high environmental and construction standards.

“We want to hear from everyone who uses our leisure centres, as well as those who live and work in and around Workington, about which is their preferred option. The results of this public consultation are an important piece of the decision making process. Members of the Council’s Executive will consider these views alongside other factors such as a detailed business case, and viability and economic assessments when we are making our decision.”

Copies of the consultation leaflet are available now in the Workington and Cockermouth leisure centres as well as in the Council’s area offices in Workington, Cockermouth, Maryport, Wigton, Keswick and Aspatria Local Links. It can also be completed online. The deadline for comments is Friday 20 September 2013.

Notes to Editors:

1.      Roadshows will take place from 4pm - 9pm at Workington Leisure Centre, Moorclose, on Wednesday 11 September and Thursday 12 September, 2013.

2.      Roadshows will also be held from 9am - 5pm in the former X-Catalogue shop premises in Washington Square, Workington, Friday 13 September and Saturday 14 September 2013.

3.      Visitors will be able to see the detailed plans for each site option at these roadshows and council staff will be available to answer any questions they may have about the proposals. There will also be the opportunity to choose their preferred option and feed this back to the Council online or on a paper survey form.

 

Q&A - The new swimming pool and leisure centre for Workington

 

How long has Allerdale Borough Council been planning to build a new swimming pool and leisure centre in Workington?

This initiative was earmarked as a key project in the Council Plan – the Council Commitment to Local Communities 2012-2015 - with discussions about the project taking place for many months before. Improving and enhancing sports, arts and leisure provision is a priority for the Council and one target for the authority is to provide accessible and affordable facilities, venues and activities. The creation of a new swimming pool and leisure centre is a key part of this commitment.

Wouldn’t it be cheaper to refurbish the existing leisure centre?

Workington Leisure Centre was built around 40 years ago. It is now very out of date and expensive to run in terms of energy efficiency. We have spent many thousands of pounds keeping the facilities up to date, but the building is reaching the end of its useful life. The new swimming pool and leisure centre will be far cheaper to run and built to very high environmental and construction standards.

The Council says it will cost £9 million to build the new leisure centre – how do you know that will be the final figure?

There are lots of similar leisure centre schemes which have been completed elsewhere in the country that we are able to use a benchmark. The project will be funded through a combination of borrowing and the disposal of surplus assets by the Council.

Who makes the final decision about a site?

Between now and September 20, the Council is asking members of the public - leisure centre users, residents, visitors and local business owners and employees – to tell us which of the three options they like the most. The results of this public consultation are an important piece of the decision making process. Councillors will consider the public views alongside other factors such as a detailed business case, viability and economic assessments. All the information will be compiled into a report which is due to go before the Council’s Executive on Wednesday 13 November. It is the elected members of the Executive who will debate the issues and make the final decision.

How have these three site options been chosen?

All three sites are in the Council’s ownership and can accommodate the type of high quality swimming pool and leisure centre that the authority wants to build in Workington and can accommodate many of the sports and leisure facilities which people have told us they want to see.

What will happen to the existing site if one of the town centre options is chosen as the site for the new swimming pool and leisure centre?

Until a final decision is made, it is much too early to say what would happen to the existing site, but what will always be a priority – whichever option is chosen – is that the needs of the community will form a large part of the decision making process. The Council will welcome the views of all local residents as to whether they think a new swimming pool and leisure centre on the current site is the best scheme for Workington and the Moorclose community, or whether the centre should move elsewhere.

When will the new swimming pool and leisure centre open?

If all goes to plan, building work will begin in 2014 and Workington’s new swimming pool and leisure centre should open in 2015.

What were the key findings from the first stage of the consultation?

In total, there were 266 responses from individual members of the public and 14 responses from organisations – including a 150+ signature petition with supporting comments from one of the local swimming clubs.

The six most popular options that respondents wanted to see in the new leisure centre are:

Swimming pool                     80%

Gym/fitness                          73%

Jacuzzi/spa                           67%

Sauna                                   66%

Sports hall                             61%

Steam room                           58%   

The full list of activities that those responding to the consultation suggested are:

Option

Total no of respondents

Percentage

Public swimming sessions

182

68%

Exercise to music

180

68%

Swimming classes – children

146

55%

Circuit training          

137

52%

Swimming classes – adults

122

46%

Badminton                

109

41%

Gymnastics               

107

40%

Athletics                    

105

40%

Parties                       

98

37%

Personal coaching sessions

96

36%

Football – children   

92

35%

Tennis                        

83

31%

Squash                      

81

30%

Football – adults           

74

28%

Boxing                       

68

26%

Netball                       

64

24%

Karate                         

50

19%

Volleyball                   

38

14%

Basketball                 

36

14%

Softball/Handball      

27

10%

Other                          

19

7%

Not Answered           

25

9%

 

Activities respondents currently take part in

(ranked in order of top 10)

Activities respondents would like to see in the new centre

(ranked in order of top 10)

 

Public swimming sessions

Public swimming sessions

Exercise to music                  

Exercise to music

Swimming classes – children

Swimming classes – children

Parties                                   

Circuit training                      

Circuit training                         

Swimming classes – adults            

Badminton                              

Badminton                

Swimming classes – adults            

Gymnastics               

Football – adults                      

Athletics                    

Squash

Parties                                   

Football – children               

Personal coaching sessions

 

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0303 123 1702

Allerdale Borough Council
Allerdale House, Workington, Cumbria,
CA14 3YJ