In just under three weeks’ time (25 July), Wokingham Borough Council’s leisure centre at the multi-million pound Carnival Hub, its new flagship community building, will open its doors to the public.
It has taken just over 18 months for the main construction work to be completed, which started at the height of the Covid-19 pandemic. More than 700 construction workers have been involved in the project, which is part of the final phase of the council’s ambitious regeneration project in Wokingham town centre.
The new Carnival Hub brings together a large leisure centre and a new home for Wokingham library, along with flexible cultural use of the space. It has been built on the site of the former 1990s swimming pool and leisure centre in Wellington Road, which was knocked down in spring 2020.
Interior fit-out starts
The council’s construction contractors Pellikaan handed over the building yesterday (5 July) and the council’s leisure partner Places Leisure has begun fitting-out the interiors and installing equipment ready to welcome the first customers to the leisure centre from 9am on 25 July.
The new Wokingham Leisure Centre @ Carnival Hub, includes swimming pools, children’s splash pad, a health suite (sauna, salt and steam room), 120 station fitness suite, fitness studios including group cycling studio, a café and a dual-purpose hall for sports or 400 seat-cultural performances. There will also be a specialist gym for those with long term health conditions.
It will be one of the most energy-efficient leisure centres in the country as it includes installation of solar panels and air source heat pumps on the roof.
Fantastic community facility
Cllr Ian Shenton, newly appointed executive member for environment, sport and leisure, said: “The Carnival Hub is a fantastic community facility and I am sure many of you, like me, cannot wait for the leisure facilities to open this month. The impressive, state of the art leisure centre will help residents improve their health and wellbeing.”
New council leader Cllr Clive Jones said: “For most of the construction period we have been in the midst of the pandemic which has created some challenges which had to be overcome. Everyone involved from our contractors to council officers and our leisure partners should be proud of the achievement, especially as the leisure centre is opening ahead of the original schedule.”
Tony Penge, contract manager, Places Leisure, Wokingham said: “We are really excited to be opening the new Wokingham Leisure Centre on 25 July. We are looking forward to welcoming both new and existing customers through the doors of this fantastic facility. In advance of this we are offering the local community an opportunity to have a tour of the centre prior to opening. These will be available from Friday 8 July. Visit our website to book a place on the tour.”
Book preview tour
Ahead of the official opening of the leisure centre, Places Leisure is offering residents the chance to take a sneak preview of the centre prior to opening. Places must be booked in advance. Anyone interested in joining a tour should visit the Wokingham Leisure Centre @ Carnival Hub webpage or call Places Leisure on (0118) 977 0007.
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