Work begins next week on the new leisure centre for Stone.
The leisure centre combines a six lane 25-metre swimming pool as well as gym and fitness studios. The new centre will replace the existing blue eye-sore which is currently on Westbridge Park which for now remains open. Construction of the new leisure centre should be completed by Spring 2019.
Last year a consultation on the leisure centre proposal was put to the people of Stone. Despite a population of approx 17,000 residents only 200+ responded. Of those that did 90% said they’d use the new centre. Whilst just under 80% said it was important to have the facilities under one roof.
The centre is part of an around £10 million investment in the town’s leisure facilites. Residents, organisations and local groups are now to be asked their views on what the town needs. Ideas such as a multi-use games area, skate-park and new play facilities could be part of the leisure offer for Stone.
Councillor Mike Smith, Cabinet Member for Leisure at the council, said:
“It is great that work will be underway next week on this new leisure centre to bring swimming, a gym and fitness studios under one roof.
“We are all aware of the national picture where local authority leisure centres are being closed, or under threat of closure, to save money, so I am pleased that we are able to make this huge investment in Stone.”
Councillor Smith added that it was the biggest investment the council had made from its own resources in the borough for decades:
“Our agenda is very clear. We want to deliver a brand new leisure centre that people want, with the facilities under one roof, without burdening local tax payers. ”
The Stafford borough-council run swimming pool in Stone is currently based at Alleyne’s Academy. The pool is used by the school under a shared agreement with the local authority – and is only available to the public outside school hours. Sports facilities at the ‘Academy’ will still be part of the community leisure offer.
The consultation on new play / recreation leisure facilities in Stone will begin next week. Watch this space for updates!