Islington Council has announced that it is running a public consultation regarding the future of the Sobell Leisure Centre, following last year’s devastating flood.
Last August saw flooding from a burst water pipe, subsequently closing much of the centre after being condemned due to damage. The flooding left areas such as the trampoline park, soft play, ice rink, squash courts and sports hall out of action, however the new the new proposals for the centre would see new facilities replacing those that were damaged.
The council has stated how it is committed to creating an equal Islington, and part of this mission are the plans to ensure that residents of all ages and backgrounds are able to enjoy the benefits of exercise. Thanks to this commitment, the new proposal looks to modernise the facilities on offer. These plans include:
- Installing a new soft play space that would link with the existing trampoline park to create innovative facilities for children of all ages.
- A new baby and toddler section within that space.
- Upgrading the squash and gym facilities that are on offer.
- Accommodating the increasing demand for the boxing facilities by move the boxing area into a larger space.
- Creating a new, seated café area.
Should all of these plans be approved, the centre would become one of the leading family experience centres in the UK.
The six-week consultation will launch on the 26th May, subject to approval by the council’s executive, and will allow the community to give their ideas and opinions on the implementation of the proposals, however it is expected that the facility will now be able to appeal to a wider demographic than before.
Islington Council’s Executive Member for Health and Social Care, Cllr Nurullah Turan, said:
“We know how much the Sobell Leisure Centre’s ice rink means to some local people who have used it for years, and how disappointing the proposal to not rebuild it will be.
“However, after much thought and careful consideration, we’ve taken the difficult decision to propose that we don’t rebuilt it after it was condemned in last year’s flood. Even before the devastating impact of the cost-of-living crisis and the rise in energy prices, it had been making a loss of £250,000 per year, and the new Olympic-sized rink at Lee Valley would only lead to its usage falling further.
“As part of our commitment to creating a more equal Islington, where everyone can easily enjoy the mental, physical, and social benefits of exercise, we’re looking to rebuild the condemned parts of the Sobell Leisure Centre in a way that ensures they serve local people of all ages and background.
“We want to make sure that the new facilities work as well as possible for people across the borough, which is why we’re planning to consult on these plans later this month. Your feedback will help shape the future of the Sobell Leisure Centre, so we want to hear your ideas, insight, and