Just in from Walsall Council:
Walsall Active Living Centres opening date announced
The eagerly awaited opening date for both Oak Park and Bloxwich Active Living Centres became reality this week when the keys for both centres were handed over by contractors.
This significant moment marked the beginning stages to the run-up of their opening on Tuesday 9 August.
The new multi million pound centres, which each include a 25 metre swimming pool, teaching pool, six court sports hall, dance studio and cafe will be fitted out over the coming weeks with state of the art station fitness suites in time for their opening to the public. Oak Park is also able to offer two glass backed squash courts, sauna and a steam room. The full size, floodlit artificial grass pitch at Oak Park will be replaced over the autumn.
Councillor Julie Fitzpatrick, Portfolio Holder for Community, Leisure and Culture said: “Opening these doors for the first time is very exciting.
“It is truly wonderful to be able to take possession of these buildings and brings us ever closer to realising the Council’s commitment to improve the health and wellbeing of residents by getting more people, more active, more often.
“Over the coming weeks the two centres will be a hive of activity and the excitement of everyone working to get these centres ready is positively brimming over.
“Our customers are about to be able to access some truly iconic and outstanding facilities that they can be really proud of. Over the coming days we look forward to being able to launch our activity programmes ready to open both centres on Tuesday 9 August.”
Funded through the Council’s £24.3 million Active Living Centres initiative, the project received a £2m grant from Sport England’s “Iconic” facilities award scheme to support Walsall Council’s aspiration to improve Walsall residents’ overall health and well-being.
Excellent news. It really is quite an upgrade. I hope everyone enjoys it.
I can smell Flowers.
Thanks, and best wishes
Find it difficult to see justification for the council spending this sort of money when so many cuts have been made in other areas. I use Oak Park on a regular bassis and would have been quite happy with a complete refurbishment. What’s it going to cost to demolish the existing building ?.
I would imagine that refurbing the old centre would cost a lot more than you’d expect (refurbs always do), and produce a much less satisfactory result; never mind that the centre would probably have been closed for months to do it. The old Oak Park is quite old now- I can’t remember it not being there, and I’m in my mid-late 40s.
If you’re concerned enough, you could issue a FOI request asking if a refurb was considered and costed, and compare that to the building costs.
I was at Oak Park this evening – the current Move It scheme is changing with the move to the new building. Apparently letters have been sent out but I hadn’t received one – not sure if others are in the same boat? Currently the card can be used anytime, the change means that the price goes up to £15/month (from £10) and the facilities can’t be used between 5-8pm. A shame there was no mention of this previously but I’m looking forward to some upgraded equipment nonetheless.
Indoor bowling at the new centre?