Leamington and Warwick leisure centre reopenings delayed until next spring

What the new centre at Newbold Comyn could look like
What the new centre at Newbold Comyn could look like

The full reopening of leisure centres in Leamington and Warwick will be delayed until spring next year, Warwick District Council has confirmed.

The council put the delay to the £14.5 million project down to ‘unforseen infrastructure problems’ which were not found during the first surveys of the sites. Both centres were previously expected to fully reopen by the end of 2017.

Newbold Comyn had been completely closed to users from January, and was set to reopen this month until the delay was announced.

The centre will partially reopen in August 2017, where users will be able to access the new swimming pool, 100-station gym and fitness studios. Swimming pool users will have to use temporary changing rooms until the new ‘village-style’ changing rooms and sports hall are built in spring 2018.

However, the council also announced the swimming pool at St Nicholas Park Leisure Centre in Warwick will reopen ahead of schedule in September, after an initial opening date of November was timetabled.

The current gym in St Nicholas Park Leisure Centre will be refurbished with the current equipment replaced and improved during June this year, before the new 80-station gym opens in spring 2018.

Warwick District Council’s portfolio holder for culture Cllr Michael Coker said: “We are disappointed by the delays to this project which were beyond our control and would apologise to our customers for the additional inconvenience this will bring.

“We are working closely with our contractors to find ways to make up for the time that has been lost.

“Our priority was to reopen both swimming pools as quickly as possible and whilst I regret Newbold will be delayed I am pleased that St Nicholas is opening earlier.

“I would ask our customers for their patience which I believe will be rewarded with much improved facilities.”

Leader of the Labour Group Cllr Colin Quinney felt the centres should have been tackled one at a time to reduce disruption to users.

He said: “We are obviously disappointed at this delay to the reopening of the two leisure centres.

“Our Labour group had suggested working on one leisure centre at a time and keeping either St Nicks or Newbold Comyn pool open during the refurbishments - as per the original plan - which perhaps would have avoided further disruption for local residents.”

New management providers ‘Everyone Active’ will take over the running of both centres, as well as Abbey Fields swimming pool and Castle Farm Recreation Centre in Kenilworth, from Thursday June 1.

They said they will be contacting all existing leisure centre customers soon to confirm details of membership and booking arrangements.