- Land off A511 (Stephenson Way) is the preferred site for a new leisure centre
- Site investigations will inform the council whether the land is suitable for this development
- A new leisure centre would increase and improve leisure facilities for the district
- Artists impressions available – please use the links at the bottom of this news release
Plans to build a new leisure centre in Coalville took a step forward last night as councillors agreed the preferred site.
The authority’s Cabinet has agreed that the council will enlist leisure experts to investigate the site, which sits near the corner of the A511 and Thornborough Road.
The decision to look into the possibility of building a new leisure centre in Coalville is being driven by three key factors:
- The popular Hermitage Leisure Centre is almost at capacity and would require significant investment over the coming years to meet demand. A new leisure centre would both improve the facilities and increase capacity.
- A leisure centre on the A511 site would be more accessible than the current Hermitage Leisure Centre in Whitwick, and sits close to complimentary facilities including Stephenson College, supermarkets and the existing recreation facilities associated with Hermitage Leisure Centre. This site is allocated in the current and emerging Local Plans for leisure use.
- Bringing the leisure centre closer to Coalville would help support the regeneration of the town. Alongside a number of other projects, this scheme would bring people to Coalville for their leisure pursuits.
Councillors agreed that, should the A511 site be shown to be suitable, the facilities would be likely to include:
- An eight court sports hall
- An eight lane 25-metre pool
- A 15m x 8.5-metre learner pool with moveable floor
- A health and fitness suite with 150 pieces of equipment
- A multi-activity studio, large enough to be sub-divided into two separate rooms
- One spin studio
- Three squash courts
- Vending area(s)
- A café / bar
- A 250-space car park.
The council would look to find an operator to design, build, operate and maintain the leisure centre. The management of both the new leisure centre and Hood Park Leisure Centre in Ashby de la Zouch would transfer to this provider.
Councillor Richard Blunt, Leader of North West Leicestershire District Council, said: “The idea of building a new leisure centre in Coalville is widely supported by staff, sports clubs and members of the public. Bringing a state of the art facility closer to Coalville town centre with good access from the main roads makes sense.
“We’ve looked at a number of potential sites in and around Coalville and have evidence to show that this site – off the A511 near the roundabout with Thornborough Road – is the best possible option.
“Our priority now is to instruct expert consultants to investigate the site in depth and establish that it is a suitable site before we decide whether or not to go ahead and build.”
Councillor Alison Smith MBE, Deputy Leader and Portfolio Holder for Community Services at North West Leicestershire District Council, added: “Hermitage Leisure Centre is a very popular facility – the classes, equipment and excellent staff there are a major draw for local people. However, anyone who goes to Hermitage knows that it needs some significant investment and that the site is limited in terms of increasing participation and offering new and interesting things for customers.
“A new centre is an exciting opportunity for us all – and particularly for staff and customers, who would benefit greatly from modern facilities. I’m looking forward to seeing the site report and hope that it shows this is a suitable place for a new leisure centre in Coalville.”
Depending on the outcome of the site investigations, Full Council will decide whether or not to build a new leisure centre on the A511 site.
If they decide to go ahead, the process of finding an operator would starts straight away.
Other sites in and around Coalville were considered for the new leisure centre.
A potential site on the Bridge Road Car Park was investigated, but public feedback showed that the site was not preferable, due to access issues.
The current brownfield site off Mantle Lane was investigated, but the land would be too expensive to buy. The site of the former Snibston Discovery Museum was also considered, but access issues and cost of the land also made this site unviable.