Kirkby could soon have a brand new £3 million leisure centre following proposals made in a surprise announcement by Ashfield District Council this week.
The proposed facility, which will include a multi-use sports hall, state of the art gymnasium, activity studio, crèche and cafe, would be a replacement for the existing Leisure Centre at the Festival Hall.
Coun Chris Baron, Ashfield District Council Leader, said: “This is a fantastic opportunity to improve leisure facilities for the communities of Kirkby and beyond.
“This fit-for-the-21st century facility would be far more attractive than the rather ageing facilities at the Festival Hall, and would encourage more of our residents to engage in a healthy lifestyle.
“The most economical way for the Council to invest in this facility is to use its own land, in front of the Council headquarters, on which Ada Lovelace House currently stands.”
Coun Baron said there were no exact figures for the cost of the centre, but added it should be in the region of £3 million.
The Council is consulting with residents in order to gauge the public support for the idea.
Consultation will take place from mid August to mid September.
The Council’s Cabinet will consider the proposal in principle at its meeting on 17th September.
Final approval would be given by the full Council on 9th October.
Coun Baron said the money to fund the centre would come from a variety of sources, including borrowing, capital receipts and the assets of the authority.
Reduced management fees negotiated with the authority’s leisure contractors, Sports and Leisure Management (SLM), would help with the cost.
He said: “The Council works in close partnership with Everyone Active, promoted by our partners SLM.
“Promoting health and well being is a major priority for the Council, and this new leisure centre will ensure that we are offering an alternative to sitting in front of the TV or computer.
“A new modern facility in a prime location such as this will superbly complement the regeneration of Kirkby Town Centre, with the imminent development of the town centre plaza.
“Our commitment and drive to regenerate our town centres are really starting to bear fruit, demonstrated nowhere better than in Kirkby, with these two exciting projects about to come on board.
“We are keen to listen to the views of all Ashfield residents, to find out if they agree with the Council’s vision.”
Coun Baron said the staff currently at the Festival Hall would be transferred across to the proposed new facility.
To have your say on the plan visit: