Leisure club under threat of closure

09-2666-1''Hucknall, Edgewood Leisure Centre.
09-2666-1''Hucknall, Edgewood Leisure Centre.

A Hucknall leisure centre could be closed if residents’ preferences for council budget cuts are backed by councillors.

In a recent survey by Ashfield District Council, residents’ suggested how they think the authority should save £1.1m from its 2014/15 budget.

One of the areas up for discussion was the possible closure of Edgewood Leisure Centre, in Hucknall.

The facility, which forms part of Edgewood Primary School off Christchurch Road, costs £57,000 to run each year.

But the news has come as a shock to centre users.

“I’m very disappointed with the results of this survey,” said Steve Wilkins who has run Edgewood Judo Club out of the centre since 1995.

“I didn’t know anything about this survey until I read it in the newspaper.

“It would have been nice as a centre user to have been in the loop and notified of its existence by the council.”

According to the council, 1,000 took part in the survey which was online or placed in selected locations across the district. However it was not sent direct to residents.

“The centre is well used and many youngsters access various clubs at this site,” added Mr Wilkins who has 30 members at his club.

One of the reasons suggesting the closure of Edgewood is because similar facilities are at Hucknall Leisure Centre.

Hucknall councillor and leader of Ashfield District Council, Coun Chris Baron, said he too was disappointed with the survey results.

“I am sorry that the service users feel that they have not been consulted enough,” he said. “However the approach used was one of a district-wide basis, offering everyone the opportunity to comment.

“No decision has been made, and as one of the Hucknall West Ward councillors, along with Couns Knight and Grundy, we are also bitterly disappointed with the results of the consultation.

“In Ashfield, we are trying to educate, particularly our school children, in the long term benefits of the “Active Ashfield” programme and a healthier lifestyle,and for Edgewood Drive to be placed third in terms of cost savings upsets me.

“I am working with the council to try and resolve the issue, not only at this leisure centre, but Huthwaite Leisure Centre too.”