Approval granted to replace ageing leisure centre with modern sports hub

Plans to transform a dated leisure centre site into a new sports and wellbeing hub have been approved by members of Leeds City Council’s north and east plans panel.

Fearnville Leisure Centre in Gipton – which dates back to the 1980s – will now be replaced with a facility designed to enhance the health and wellbeing of the local community and sports clubs members in the area.

The new-look centre will be built on part of King George V Playing Fields, a 28-acre green space where the current leisure centre is housed, and will include amenities such as a 25-metre main pool, learner pool and water splash pads, a 120-station gym, all-weather pitch, spin studio, family changing village, soft play, party rooms and a café.

Work is expected to start on site early in the new year and take around 18 months to complete.

The existing centre will remain open for use while the new facility is built, before being demolished once construction is complete.

Councillor Salma Arif, executive member for adult social care, active lifestyles and culture, said: “This is an exciting step forward in the delivery of brand new facility that will provide a significant boost to the health and wellbeing of people in east Leeds.

“We hope the new centre will be a great source of pride for the local community, offering increased opportunities for physical activities as well as bringing social and mental health benefits to all who use it.

“Improving the health and wellbeing of our residents is one of the foundations of the council’s Best City Ambition and this new facility reaffirms our commitment to ensuring the people who are the poorest improve their health the fastest.

“We now look forward to progressing to the next phase of the plans and seeing this long-standing ambition become a reality.”

The plans also include tree-planting and soft landscaping to increase the site’s biodiversity.

Local demand for sports and leisure facilities is expected to grow over the coming years, with thousands of new homes planned through the East Leeds Extension and related development sites.

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