£1.5 millon boost for leisure centre

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Ashfield District Council have announced firm plans to build Kirkby’s new leisure centre.

Later this month a report will go to the authority’s cabinet outlining the next stage of the plans for a new flagship leisure destination.

Subject to cabinet approval the will proceed with negotiating the purchase of the preferred site on the corner Station Street and Portland Street.

Match funding opportunities have been identified through the D2N2 Local Enterprise Partnership, who have agreed funding worth £7.6million to help reinvigorate Nottinghamshire town and local centres. £1.5million of this has been secured as funding for the leisure destination in Kirkby, which is one of seven projects set to benefit from the scheme.

The Council is also working with Sport England to explore further funding opportunities.

Councillor Cheryl Butler, Leader of Ashfield District Council said: “This is a really exciting project for Kirkby and will give a real boost to the town centre. Along with Lammas and Hucknall leisure centres, Ashfield will be leading the way in the variety and quClality of leisure facilities it provides to its residents. The Council is committed to improving the health & wellbeing of residents and involving them in the plans for the new leisure centre. A customer steering group has been set up to help shape the plans.”

Matthew Wheatley, Chief Executive of the D2N2 Local Enterprise Partnership (pictured), said: “Thriving town and local centres are vital for wider economic growth.W e are making a major and long-term investment.”

Following extensive consultation and a feasibility study the planned development will provide Kirkby with a cutting edge family leisure and healthy living destination in the heart of the town.

Plans for the new facility encompass activity opportunities for the whole family and include:

Six court sports hall for sporting activities and events.

Indoor Adventure climbing wall. Health & fitness gym with functional training and free weights;

Multi activity & Group cycling studios.

Indoor Adventure soft play area.

Health & Wellbeing suite.

Subject to external funding being secured, the delivery of the project will start towards the end of 2018 and into 2019 with the new leisure centre open early in 2021.

The new leisure facility would deliver improved financial, social, economic and health outcomes to the area. The feasibility study estimates that as much as £16.7m would be brought into the local economy.

Councillor Don Davis, Deputy Leader of Ashfield District Council added: “The economic benefits the new leisure development will bring will have a real impact on Kirkby and Ashfield as a whole. It will bring construction jobs to the area, as well as employment opportunities once the facilities are open. Income from visitors would provide a boost to the local economy and along with Lammas leisure centre would put Ashfield on the map in terms of state of the art sporting facilities”.