Last minute change of plans for Shirebrook gymnastics club venue

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A popular gymnastics club has asked for a speedy response from Bolsover Council to grant planning permission for a new gym after its initial choice of venue fell through.

Shirebrook Gymnastics Club has made a planning application for change of use of storage building to gymnasium at 157 Carter Lane Shirebrook.

The club said they had to walk away after a previous application for the change of use of a storage building at Thickley Close Shirebrook to a gymnasium.

In a covering letter, to Bolsover district Council explaining the club’s predicament, Applicant Zoe McDonald said:

“We previously applied for a change of use of a building on Border Road, Shirebrook. However as the project has progressed and we’ve begun to delve into the material change of use for the building, it has become apparent that the building is not fit for our purposes. Unfortunately we have had to walk away from this building.

“We are now looking to sign an agreement for lease on a warehouse on Thickley Close, which is also owned by Ashley Bellamy.

“The problem our organisation faces is that we are now homeless as of 31st March.

“Back in December when our lease was up for renewal at Shirebrook Academy, we decided that we were not willing to sign up for another 12 months lease, due to the planned move.

“However, part way through January, when building control and architects became involved, we realised the plan was in peril.

“We attempted to extend our hire at the school by 1-2 months, but this was declined as an alternative organisation who were willing to sign for a year had been booked as our replacement.

“As an organisation we have worked so hard to build up our member’s base and to push the opportunities we provide for our members and we are one of the largest clubs in the Bolsover area.

“We really do hope our application can be looked on favourably for a speedy resolution, as otherwise it leaves all these children who love Gymnastics and our club, no place to go.

“Other clubs have large waiting lists and children may not be eligible for places for up to six months and in some cases longer.

“We currently have Gymnasts who are competing along the National and Elite development pathways, something which other local clubs don’t offer, unless you’re able to go to Nottingham, Derby or Leeds.

“The disruption of not having anywhere to train would be catastrophic for the progression of these higher level Gymnasts.

“We would like to use this letter to address some of the questions raised to our previous application.

“We have been looking for a large industrial unit for a number of years, our member surveys that we have completed, indicated that 50 per cent of our club would not be willing to travel further than 3-5 miles from our current venue of Shirebrook Academy.

“This has restricted our catchment area somewhat, there are already two large Gymnastics Clubs within Mansfield, and therefore this is not an area we were wishing to move into.”