Gosport Leisure Park: development update

Article by Sam Bannister from The Portsmouth News:

IT MIGHT have taken a while to get started, but work on Gosport’s new leisure park is progressing at lightning speed.

Workers are now pouring in the concrete foundations of a new swimming pool and fitness centre at the Holbrook recreation site. The £7.2m redevelopment officially started earlier this month after delays with legal contracts. But now contractors have descended on the site to start work on the main building and football pitches.

The leader of Gosport Borough Council, Cllr Mark Hook, said: ‘I’m delighted with the work the contractors are doing and they are working really well. They are working to quite a tight timetable and they are working to those dates. At the moment the foundations for the pool are going down. There’s been a lot of work going on already – the site has been cleared, quite a few footings have already been dug and they have put in some temporary pathways. Next they will start putting the structure up.’

The completed Gosport Leisure Park will have a 25m pool, learner pool, fitness and dance studio and play area.  Outside, there will be five-a-side and seven-a-side all-weather football pitches and parking. And last will be the construction of the town’s first chain hotel, run by Premier Inn.

Cllr Hook said work is hoped to start on the steel structure of the pool and sports hall at the end of March or beginning of April.  Once the building is completed, the old Holbrook Recreation Centre will be knocked down and car parking spaces put in. After that, workers will start on construction of the proposed hotel and restaurant.

Cllr Hook added: ‘We thought it was important to do it in that order. We promised the people of Gosport a leisure centre so we have made sure it’s the leisure centre first. We’ll then knock down the old one and put in parking and then we’ll do the rest.’

The council hopes part of the site will be ready to open in time for the Olympics.