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Bury St Edmunds Leisure Centre set for £8.36 million package of maintenance and improvement works





An £8.36 million package of maintenance and improvement works at Bury St Edmunds Leisure Centre has been drawn up.

West Suffolk Council will, on Tuesday, discuss spending an extra £2.15 million on top of an existing £6.2 million capital programme for the works at the facility, in Beetons Way.

The work is needed after plans for the Western Way Development, which would have included a new leisure centre, were shelved due to spiralling costs.

Bury St Edmunds Leisure Centre in Beetons Way. Picture: Mecha Morton
Bury St Edmunds Leisure Centre in Beetons Way. Picture: Mecha Morton

A council report said the plans had been developed and costed to address the high and medium risk maintenance issues at the centre which will ensure it has at least another 10 years of use.

The maintenance and improvements at the facility, run by Abbeycroft Leisure, include remodelling the main entrance area, a new café and soft play through the conversion of half of the leisure pool space and the creation of a splash pad with water play features in half the leisure pool space, with the flumes retained.

A refurbishment of the cubicle area, the poolside shower and toilets and the pool halls is proposed including replacing the moveable pool floor in the activity pool.

The pool edge tiles and pool balustrades would be replaced.

West Suffolk Council will, on Tuesday, discuss spending an extra £2.15 million on top of an existing £6.2 million capital programme for the works at the facility, in Beetons Way. Picture: Mecha Morton
West Suffolk Council will, on Tuesday, discuss spending an extra £2.15 million on top of an existing £6.2 million capital programme for the works at the facility, in Beetons Way. Picture: Mecha Morton

A health and wellbeing area would be created with the addition of eight treatment rooms along with the refurbishment of an existing studio.

The gym would be refurbished with the inclusion of an E-gym and the creation of a dedicated spin studio and retention of the college gym space.

The health suite area would also be refurbished as would the sports hall with a new timber floor.

A report before the council on Tuesday seeks approval to spend up to £290,000 on surveys and design work to enable a fully costed project to be approved by cabinet before entering into the works contract.

The work is needed after plans for the Western Way Development, which would have included a new leisure centre, were shelved due to costs. Picture: Mecha Morton
The work is needed after plans for the Western Way Development, which would have included a new leisure centre, were shelved due to costs. Picture: Mecha Morton

A business case said the extra £2.15m can be funded through a mixture of maintenance contributions from Abbeycroft and developer contributions for sports hall provision (£670,000) and borrowing (£1.48m), with the borrowing being repaid annually by the return from the improvement in Abbeycroft’s performance.

The authority will also discuss on Tuesday plans for the former West Suffolk Council depot and NHS supplies building, in Olding Road.

This includes a provisional proposal for a trampoline and virtual reality experience within the former depot.

The site would have formed part of the Western Way Development.

Cllr Ian Shipp, cabinet member for leisure, who will be seeking the budget approval of the council, said: “Refurbishing the leisure centre will provide the opportunity to improve the leisure centre, enhancing the offer for young families while also developing the work linking health and leisure services to aid recovery or help people manage a medical condition.

“This carefully considered investment that I will be asking council to agree to, will allow us to update and enhance the facilities so that they are better matched to what people need.”