Community Sports Hub plans submitted

How the proposed Community Sports Hub and tennis courts could look

How the proposed Community Sports Hub and tennis courts could look

Plans have been submitted for Central Park’s new Community Sports Hub and tennis courts.

Situated in the heart of the park on the site of current bowling pavilion, the hub will complement the current bowling greens as well as the refurbished sports plateau by adding changing rooms, accessible toilets and storage facilities; opening up the park to a wider range of outdoor sports.

Meanwhile, four new hard-surfaced tennis courts will be created to the east of the hub. Flood-lit and build to Lawn Tennis Association standard, the courts will combine pay-to-play access with free community events and coaching.

Councillor Sue Dann, Cabinet member for the Environment and Street Scene, said: “I am really pleased to support the plans for the Community Sports Hub and the tennis courts, which will improve the provision for sport across the park.

“Encouraging a wide range of people to visit and enjoy Central Park is at the heart of these plans and these innovative and fresh designs should do exactly that. I hope that in time, they will in time become focal points of the park.”

As part of the plans to create the hub, the existing pavilion will remain in place. Upgrades will be made to the toilets, dry changing rooms and the kitchen and heating installed so that a wider range of community and sports groups will be able to use the space all year round.

An extension will see additional wet-changing facilities, designed to Football Foundation specifications, join the current dry changing rooms and two further rooms for referees and the ambulant disabled. This will allow the hub to be used by football, rugby and cricket teams playing on the sports plateau and also accommodate those using the bowls and tennis facilities adjacent to the hub.

A main entrance will be incorporated into the north-facing side of the building to meet a new pathway where a grassed public space, suitable for families and over-spill from events at the hub, will be created. The current the bowling greens to the west of the hub will be retained and upgraded.

The new hub has been designed by Erect Architecture and LDA Design.

A consultation period will now run until Tuesday 10 July, when a final planning decision will be made.

More details on Central Park improvements programme can be found here.