Hengrove Park Leisure Centre - work begins with synchronised swimmers making a ‘splash’

15 Jul 2010
Swimmers in Bristol and the southwest can really set their sights on spring 2012 when completion of the region’s stunning state-of-the-art swimming pool is set for completion.

Building work is now underway and instead of the usual turf cutting ceremony by civic dignitaries, synchronised swimmers from the Central Bristol Senior Squad performed a walk through of their impressive, pre-competition routine to mark the occasion.

Renowned for their creative style and technical direction, the Bristol Central Senior Squad are also on the England Talent Programme. Their attendance at the start of building works underpins the ambitious new-build project, which will not only double the swimming capacity in the city, but which will also promote competitive swimming at the highest level across the region.

The city council and its partner - Bristol Active Limited (BAL), are now focusing on the delivery of the new multi-million pound leisure development, incorporating a 50-metre swimming pool with two vertical booms and moveable flooring and a learner pool with a moveable floor.

The leisure centre will also boast a ‘dry’ sports site, including fitness suit, courts, studios and changing facilities; healthy living zone and meeting rooms.

Councillor Simon Cook, Bristol’s deputy leader and cabinet member for capital projects, said: “The start of building working on the leisure centre is another key Hengrove milestone. Thanks must go to the many people have worked incredibly hard to get to this stage of the project’s development.

“The new leisure facility will be the city’s and region’s flagship pool and sports facility. It will attract swimmers of all ages and abilities - and best of all, its design and high specification will inspire adults and children to take to the water and make a real splash.”

Fabio D'Alonzo of Bristol Active Limited, added: “A lot of hard work has gone into reaching this state-of-the-art leisure centre and we look forward to delivering excellent sports and leisure facilities for the city of Bristol as well as making significant contribution to the regeneration of South Bristol.”
As well as making a difference to swimming in the city, the leisure centre will also be a key element in the wider Hengrove Park and south Bristol’s regeneration scheme. Overall, the Hengrove Park development will see a new South Bristol Community Hospital, a new Skills Academy to help local people gain vital skills and qualifications, and new business opportunities, with the potential to create hundreds of local jobs.

City of Bristol College will be the first occupier of the Hengrove Park site, when its new South Bristol Skills Academy opens to students in September. The College recently received the keys for the Skills Academy after construction work was successfully completed earlier this month.
Keith Elliott, Principal at City of Bristol College, commented: “The College's new Skills Academy will transform learning and educational achievement in south Bristol and we are delighted to be playing a key role in the area’s regeneration. The building is creating a real buzz in the local community and our staff are looking forward to welcoming the first students into the centre next term.”

The infrastructure works to provide road access and utilities to serve the leisure centre and other elements of phase 1 of the Hengrove Park regeneration programme are already completed.

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