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Storm-damaged roof at Swallows Leisure Centre fixed ready for re-opening after lockdown

Published Tuesday 16 March, 2021
Last updated on Tuesday 16 March, 2021

Work to replace the severely storm-damaged roof of Swallows Leisure Centre has been completed.

The roof of the leisure centre in Sittingbourne was damaged in storm Ciara last year, causing significant damage.

In July, the council agreed to provide £800,000 to replace a large area over the pool, sports hall, café and part of the gym.

Cllr Angela Harrison, cabinet member for health and wellbeing at the council, said:

“I’m glad to see the works have finished, so the centre can now plan for reopening as lockdown restrictions are relaxed in coming weeks and months.

“The last year has been a tremendous challenge for the centre, with the damaged roof, national lockdowns, and adapting how they operate to make sure people could exercise safely.

“We know how important Swallows is for local people’s health and wellbeing, which is why we’ve invested a significant amount of money on the repairs.

“We’ve invested now as we don’t want to cut corners and just patch over issues as they crop up. It needed to be done properly so we can prevent more unnecessary closures which don’t just have a direct financial impact, but also have a significant effect on the health and wellbeing of local people.”

Dave Harcourt, Chief Executive Officer at Swale Community Leisure who run the leisure centre, said:

“It’s fantastic news that after a lengthy construction period, overcoming the constraints of Covid-19 and the inevitable winter weather, that the Swallows Leisure Centre roof project is finally complete.

“This is great news for our customers, and also for our staff, who are looking forward to the pool and sports hall being operable again.

“It is thanks to the investment and ongoing support from Swale Borough Council in bringing this about, that when we re-open following the Governments ‘Road-map to Recovery’, we anticipate the return of so many wonderful people to the centre.”

Plans are being prepared to reopen the centre in line with Government guidance, and further announcements will be made in due course.