One of the South’s biggest new leisure and fitness developments has reached an important milestone with a “topping out” ceremony to mark completion of the main structure.
Eastleigh Borough Council Leader, Councillor Keith House added the finishing touches to the roof of the huge Sports Hall at the new Fleming Park Leisure Centre. He was joined by representatives of main partners – funders, Sport England; developers, Interserve Construction Limited and centre operators, PfP Leisure.
Facilities at the new centre, which is being developed by the Borough Council, are larger than at present, with a 15-badminton court sports hall, gym and studios, and `wet facilities’ that encompass an eight-lane, 25-metre swimming pool (an increase from six lanes), a larger and more versatile learner pool with a floor depth that can be altered depending on use, and a changing village. The new centre will also be family-friendly, with a crèche and a large soft play area incorporating party rooms. It will continue to be the base for the council’s HealthWorks health promotion team. It has high environmental standards and is designed to be in keeping with the new parkland environment.
The construction project is delivering economic, as well as health and fitness benefits. The £25 million facility is being built at no cost to the local council tax payer, with funding coming from prudential borrowing, the New Homes Bonus fund, and grants from Sport England (£2 million) and Netball England.
Construction partners, Interserve, whose regional office is at Nursling just outside the Eastleigh Borough boundary, have a policy of sourcing local sub-contractors wherever possible and more than half of the workers on site are from SO and PO postcodes.
The development also secures the jobs of staff at the existing Fleming Park Leisure Centre which remains open as the new facility takes shape next door. Operators, Places for People, won the licence to run the new centre for 20 years.
Leader of Eastleigh Borough Council, Councillor Keith House, said: ‘It is great news that the new Fleming Park Leisure Centre is making such good progress.
‘As a very high-quality venue for fitness, sport and health, the new Fleming Park Leisure Centre will help make Eastleigh a healthier borough – but will also bring real benefits to the local economy by creating jobs and giving business to local companies.
‘What’s more, this is being achieved without any additional cost to Eastleigh’s council tax payers.’