Wokingham town centre is all set to become the local destination of choice for resident’s sports, leisure and entertainment needs as the updated plans for Phase 2 of the Carnival regeneration go public this week.
Cllr Charlotte Haitham Taylor, executive member for regeneration, said: “Wokingham residents were very clear with us in terms of what they did and didn’t want from the new Carnival Pool development. Since gaining planning consent for the scheme we’ve been working closely with Places Leisure and the Library Service to look at how we can incorporate the great ideas and feedback which came from local people during the planning process. We want to make this a flagship building offering our local community a wide and diverse range of high quality facilities and experiences for all to enjoy
“The updated designs include all the facilities shown in the original plans, such as the larger gym, studio spaces, four court sports hall, two swimming pools, café and a large and flexible library space. But I’m very pleased to say we’ve been also been able to deliver lots and lots more of the ideas that we know local people are going to love into the space.”
What's changed in response to your ideas?
Changes made in response to resident feedback include –
An exciting new Clip ‘n Climb adventure climbing facility and a multi-level Soft Play area for an improved family offer
New children’s Splash Pad with fountains and jets alongside the pool to keep that element of fun and play
An even bigger gym and a specialist spin studio
A spa area
A larger café area with more seating and improved view into the teaching pool area
New viewing galleries for people to watch classes and activities in comfort
Specialist acoustic designs for use of sports hall and studios as performance and event spaces for the community
Access improvements including closer blue badge parking, improved changing and easier access into the pools
Improving our facilities
Cllr Parry Batth, executive member for environment and leisure, added: “The council has been investing significantly in improving our sports and leisure facilities for the last few years with projects going on across the borough such as the brand new leisure centre at Bulmershe and the improvements to Loddon Valley including a new soft play centre. The new centre at Carnival follows in this theme and is going to be a fabulous space for all our residents.
“Fun activities like the children’s soft play, clip ‘n climb and splash pad areas will offer something completely new for families, with state-of-the-art and improved spaces like the studios, sports hall, swimming pools, larger gym and specialist spin studio catering to local sports lovers.
“And it’s not just about sports and leisure. The new Library will be a fantastic space, offering all the current facilities such as the lending library, children’s zone, study areas and meeting rooms in an improved environment with much more flexible and useable space which will be perfect for running events and activities. The new library, along with local cultural groups, will also be able to use flexible spaces in the wider centre to host bigger events, lectures and performances, such as the new sports hall which can convert to a 400 seat performance space with tiered bleacher seating.”
Where can I find out more about Carnival Phase 2?
Work is expected to start in summer 2020 with the new leisure centre and library opening in 2022.
The updated plans will be on display at Wokingham Library and the Carnival Pool from Thursday October 10 and can also be viewed on line in the Carnival Phase 2 Leisure Centre and Library Update
The council has also organised events at the above locations to allow people to find out more about the scheme and the great new facilities which will be on offer.
The events are as follows –
Friday October 18, 11am – 2pm, Carnival Pool Leisure Centre
Thursday October 24, 4pm – 8pm, Carnival Pool Leisure Centre
Saturday October 26, 8am – 2pm, Carnival Pool Leisure Centre
Friday November 1, 10am – 2pm, Wokingham Library
When will work start?
In order to build the new complex the existing pool and gym will need to be demolished. The council wants to make sure alternative facilities are available for residents whilst Carnival is closed so work will not start until after the new Bulmershe Leisure Centre opens in summer 2020.
Wokingham Library will continue to be based in its current location in Denmark Street until the new complex is complete and ready to move into. More design work will take place closer to the move to look in detail at how the space will be laid out internally.
The car park and bowling alley are unaffected by the works and will remain open throughout.