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Dovercourt: Councillor welcomes pool revamp plans

PUBLISHED: 08:30 18 January 2013

Left to right – Harwich town councillors Dee King, Dave McLeod, Jo Henderson, Maria Fowler, Ivan Henderson, Garry Calver.

Left to right – Harwich town councillors Dee King, Dave McLeod, Jo Henderson, Maria Fowler, Ivan Henderson, Garry Calver.

PLANS to redevelop a run down swimming pool have been welcomed by campaigners.

Draft proposals for the Dovercourt leisure facility have been unveiled by Tendring District Council (TDC).

They include an extension featuring a new ground-floor fitness studio and a complete revamp of the changing rooms.

The plans have been drawn up by officers at TDC ahead of a cabinet meeting to be held on January 23.

They also include proposals for a “village-style” unisex changing facility, with provision for group changing and an accessible shower room.

If all cabinet members agree to the plans, the work is estimated to take 12 months to carry out after final designs are approved.

Jo Henderson, Labour councillor for Harwich west central ward, said: “I’m really pleased and welcome these plans.

“Finally, four years down the line, it looks like they are going to be spending the money on our pool.

“The changing rooms are diabolical, so local pool users will be really happy.”

The move follows a public consultation carried out last summer asking residents to have their say on improving council-run leisure facilities.

The report says feedback was strongest in respect of redeveloping the Dovercourt pool, which was built 26 years ago.

TDC has £700,000 to spend on physical improvements and says it has received “positive feedback” from external bodies about additional grant funding for work to be carried out at Frinton and Walton pool, and sites in Brightlingsea and Manningtree.

Mrs Henderson added: “I have a few questions and my only concern is, when will it happen?

“It will be at least 12 months after the plans have gone out to tender, so I would hope it happens sooner rather than later.”

Last year, campaigners, including Mrs Henderson, voiced frustration after plans to redevelop the site were stalled despite the money being earmarked for the pool four years ago.

Leader of TDC Peter Halliday said: “It’s always pleasing when you manage to bring a project to a conclusion. I’m glad we’re delivering what we always said we would.

“We’re also looking to attract other funding which means we will be able to free up more capital for other facilities around the district.”

The proposals can be viewed online at www.tendringdc.gov.uk

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