Wokingham Borough Council is asking for residents’ views on the future of Bulmershe Leisure Centre in Woodley as it explores options for improving the centre.
The leisure centre underwent some cosmetic refurbishment, incorporating new facilities and equipment in 2014, thanks to investments from the borough council and 1Life – the council’s leisure provider. However at the same time the borough council promised to look at future plans to sustain and improve the centre further.
The centre was built in the 1970s and its facilities are tired and in need of investment to bring it up to a better standard to help the council support its vision ‘to create a great place to live, an even better place to do business’ and the borough-wide health and wellbeing strategy.
The council is looking at possible options which include either refurbishing or rebuilding the leisure centre as well as improving general site issues such as car parking.
Representatives from the council will be visiting Woodley town centre on Saturday July 9 from 9am to 4pm and at Bulmershe Leisure Centre on Sunday July 10 from 9am to 4pm to gather local people’s views on the centre’s future.
Some disruption will unfortunately come from either option, so the council is keen to know the appetite for a partial or full closure of the centre to allow it to be rebuilt or refurbished. It is also looking to explore how often local people use the centre, what facilities they use, and what would encourage them to use it more often.
Cllr Angus Ross, executive member for environment, said: "The possibility of rebuilding or refurbishing Bulmershe Leisure Centre is a top priority for us. And we want the local community to take part and be involved in planning the way forward. It’s really important that, before we carry out any work, there is support for our proposals.
"I hope that many of you will be able to come along and share your views and we will also be able to show you examples of other fantastic leisure facilities built around the country in recent years that we could replicate in Woodley."
The council will also be speaking to Woodley Town Council and local schools that regularly use the facilities and will be able to in the future.
Funding for the centre will be agreed once a decision has been made. During the closure residents can still use the facilities at Loddon Valley Leisure Centre in Lower Earley or St Crispin's Leisure Centre and Carnival Pool in Wokingham.