Access, parking and management issues aired at Littleport leisure meeting - the verdict is progress is being made
- Credit: Archant
Littleport’s proposed new £34 million secondary school and leisure centre has moved a step closer thanks to talks about access, car parking and management.
Representatives from the county, parish and district councils as well as the sports and leisure trust and developers moved toward an agreement at a meeting in the town last week.
A stalemate over access moved a step forward when it was agreed that Camel Road could be used if some work to widen and improve was included in the scheme, which will also see a special needs school and eventually a third primary school built on the site.
Developers and the county council wanted Camel Road, with Elmside as a secondary access, whereas previously the parish council argued in favour of an A10 access.
Ownership and management leisure centre remains an issue.
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The parish council argue they should be granted the lease and oversee the running of the centre but the existing Littleport Sports and Leisure Trust say they should remain in charge and the new building leased to them.
Littleport councillor Fred Brown said: “What we want to do is resolve the issues successfully but we cannot agree to sell off parish assets without securing some return for the good of the village.
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Cllr Brown said it was the parish council’s view that the new leisure centre should be leased to the parish for the long-term, guaranteeing access to villagers for the foreseeable future.
Cllr Brown said: “We want the new school and the special school, and the leisure facilities, but we need some guarantee that the new leisure centre will be looked after in the best interest of the village.”
A stumbling block was removed when the Martin family said they were happy for their land to be used for car parking and turning for the new facilities as it benefitted residents and was linked to leisure.
Mr Barclay, who called the meeting, said: “This is a fantastic investment in our area and it is very encouraging that we are now making clear progress on issues that have so far proved a stumbling block.
“It is imperative that decisions are made as quickly as possible on those items that are still outstanding to ensure this scheme is not lost.”