Stay of execution for popular Rainham swimming pool
PUBLISHED: 12:10 01 August 2014 | UPDATED: 18:26 01 August 2014
A decision on a “masterplan” redevelopment that would see the closure of a popular public swimming pool in Rainham has been deferred.
The Chafford Sports Centre on Lambs Lane South would be demolished under plans submitted to the council for scrutiny. New improved facilities would be built over a five to 10 year period but the pool lost.
Today Havering Council’s cabinet member for culture and community engagement, Cllr Melvin Wallace, welcomed the move to delay the decision - made at a regulatory services committee meeting yesterday evening - and urged a reprieve.
He said: “I do not want the pool to go because it’s a community asset.
“At the end of the day it’s for the wellbeing of the people in southern parts of the borough. We need the facility.”
The centre is on the Chafford School campus, home to buildings as many as 60 years old, and it’s under their redevelopment plans that the pool would go.
The school proposes demolishing the sports complex and building a new sports hall and changing facilities as an extension to the main building.
New engineering facilities, an improved school entrance and upgraded external sports areas also feature as part of the “phased masterplan”, expected to take between five and 10 years.
Yesterday, Rainham and Wennington Ward Cllr Keith Roberts said the plan would create a “ridiculous situation”.
“My opinion, and that of many of the residents’ obviously, is that as an educational and leisure facility, it’ll be a big loss for Rainham,” said the Independent Residents’ Group councillor.
“Rainham does not have a lot going for it and it’s always been a well used facility.”
The swimming pool is one of just five in three centres across the borough. Hornchurch Sports Complex and Central Park Leisure Complex in Harold Hill have two each.