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Tuesday, 7 June 2011

Why not open the swimming pool in Wootton Bassett yet?


The possibility of re-opening the swimming pool on a temporary basis has been considered by the Council. However, the fire damage to the plant room and changing room areas is so extensive as to make this impossible without imprudent financial expenditure of public funds against the relatively immediate prospect of more extensive redevelopment of the leisure centre associated with the proposed campus facility.

The installation and use of temporary changing facilities has also separately been considered and rejected as impractical by the Council’s contractor DC Leisure Services, who have professional expertise in operating such facilities, given the particular conditions on the Lime Kiln site (and which will also then change following commencement of any demolition and construction activity) together with consideration of child safeguarding measures that would be required for such facilities.

There is thus no possibility, for the above reasons, that the swimming pool will be reopened on a temporary basis.
The re-instatement of the swimming pool and the associated facilities is linked to the wider discussions which will assess opportunities to create a campus in the Wootton Bassett community area, as the present situation allows scope to link any remedial works to a long term vision for the town.
The Wootton Bassett and Cricklade Area Board has formed a Shadow Community Operations Board in relation to the campus proposal for Wootton Bassett.  The Shadow Community Operations Board consists of area board and town/parish council representatives and members of the public to ensure it can act on behalf of and to represent the local community, and has a key role in leading the consultation on the campus proposal for Wootton Bassett and its surrounding area.
Members of the Shadow Community Operations Board visited the Lime Kiln Leisure Centre as part of their initial meeting on the 24th of May in order to understand the existing facilities on the site and the fire damage to the pool, plant area and health suite.  The Shadow Community Operations Board highlighted that the users of the pool, as well as the school are essential stakeholders in the Wootton Bassett campus proposal, and it is vital that the interests of these groups are key to any campus proposal.  The Shadow Community Operations Board therefore has indicated that developing a proposal that incorporates the facilities at Lime Kiln Leisure Centre was an option that should be progressed, whilst also considering other options. 

Creating a campus offers a real opportunity for communities to directly influence the services in their community area, and to plan for the future.   The Shadow Community Operations Board will be contacting members of the Wootton Bassett local community over the coming weeks to gather their views on the campus proposal.  In the interim, the building will be protected from weather damage, until the outcome of the community campus consultation is known, and a long term vision for facilities in the town is clearer.

A reopened and potentially improved pool facility, will we are certain, feature in the campus proposals and we would encourage you to engage in the consultation process. You can do this by either emailing Campusconsultation@wiltshire.gov.uk   or by attending the Community Area board meeting, further details of which can be obtained viawww.wiltshire.gov.uk/communitycampuses 

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