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Leisure centre's £1.8million revamp could start later this year

PUBLISHED: 17:04 17 July 2019 | UPDATED: 17:04 17 July 2019

Work could begin at  Newmarket Leisure Centre later this year Picture: ABBEYCROFT LEISURE

Work could begin at Newmarket Leisure Centre later this year Picture: ABBEYCROFT LEISURE

Archant

A £1.8million refurbishment project at Newmarket Leisure Centre could begin as early as August if plans are given the green light next week.

The scheme would see an upgrade of fitness and leisure facilities at the Exning Road centre, along with a brand new soft play and sensory play area.

A new café and hospitality area are also among the improvements and, if approved, work would begin in phases towards the end of August - with completion in early summer next year.

A recommendation to invest in the project, which has been informed by consultation with users and staff, will be discussed by West Suffolk Council's cabinet on Tuesday, July 23.

MORE: Take a look at town's new leisure centre facilities

Jo Rayner, West Suffolk Council cabinet member for leisure, culture and community hubs said: "We will be presenting a fully costed design to cabinet based on two project principles - engaging our users and making the connection between activity and health.

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"Newmarket Leisure Centre's gym staff have won national recognition for the outstanding quality of their fitness on referral work and we are building on this by providing NHS space for support services such as community health groups and physios.

"Our users told us they'd like to see three main things - improved opportunities for fitness and exercise, an improved café and hospitality, and better car parking.

"The scheme we are proposing would deliver against all these areas and more."

The leisure centre design put forward has cost certainty, meaning that the risk of any cost over the £1.83m requested would be borne by the contractor. The council's cabinet are also being asked to make a provision of £300,000 against car park improvements.

Initially, £7,000 of this would be used to better manage occupancy and get a clearer picture of how the site, which is shared with Newmarket Academy, is used.

Depending on the outcome, the council says there would then be the flexibility to introduce new measures.

The project follows close on the heels of a successful refit of Haverhill Leisure Centre by the same project team.

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