Progress report on Five Towns Leisure and Wellbeing Hub

06/06/2018, PR8817

​Senior councillors are to discuss the progress of plans for the new Five Towns Leisure and Wellbeing Hub in Pontefract Park.

Jacquie Speight, Cabinet Member for Culture, Leisure and Sport

​Councillors meeting on 12 June will be asked to consider the proposals and to approve a budget of up to £20.8m for the scheme, now that full and detailed costings for the project have been carried out. This includes £2.2m of external funding which has yet to be finalised.

​Cllr Jacquie Speight, Cabinet Member for Culture, Leisure and Sport at Wakefield Council, said: "This is an exciting project and we'll be discussing how the development plans have progressed since the feasibility study. Our aim is to give people in the Five Towns area the opportunity to enjoy first class leisure facilities in a new and modern building."

The proposed centre would house facilities including a 10-lane swimming pool, studio pool with moveable floor, and a splash pad water confidence area.

Other facilities would include a gym, exercise studios, a clip and climb activity, and café as well as meeting rooms for community use and referral rooms for exercise and weight management support. Outside there would be tennis courts, an activity and exercise space, a full size 3G (synthetic grass) pitch and car parking.

The new facilities will help to increase sport and physical activity levels across the district. They will also play a part in tackling health issues such as childhood obesity, long term respiratory and circulatory diseases, mental health conditions and would help with reducing social isolation affecting older people.

The facility would work in close partnership with the neighbouring Pontefract New College. This would include offering students on sporting courses practical work experience and opportunities to practice skills, along with opening up the college's sports hall for use by the community.

If councillors agree to support the plans, final approval from Pontefract Park Trust will be sought. The next stage would be for the Council to submit a planning application. If this was approved the work would be expected to start onsite by the end of this year with the centre opening in the summer of 2020.