A full planning application has now been submitted for Sheffield’s redeveloped tennis and leisure centre at the Graves centre in the south of the city.
The development will include a six-lane 25m replacement for the Graves swimming pool, a separate learner pool, a major new fitness suite and studios, two additional indoor tennis courts and the city’s first-ever dedicated gymnastics and trampolining centre.
In addition, the centre will be the city HQ for the new National Centre for Sport and Exercise Medicine (NCSEM) with extensive provision for health consultation, specialist treatment services and research facilities. The NCSEM is a 2012 Olympic Legacy Project funded by the Department of Health.
If planning permission is granted, work will start on site in early 2015 with a 12-month construction programme to opening.
The project is jointly funded by Sheffield City Council, the NCSEM, the Lawn Tennis Association, British Gymnastics and a potential contribution from Sport England. The total project cost will be around £15m.
Councillor Isobel Bowler, Sheffield City Council’s Cabinet Member for Culture, Sport and Leisure said: “If approved, this plan will provide a major modern health and leisure complex in the south of our city and offer a long awaited replacement for the pool at Graves.
“The investment will dramatically improve the quality of leisure facilities in the area, which will increase participation levels and therefore improve health.
The facility will be a great resource for people in the local area, but will also draw people from across the city given the specialist gymnastics, trampolining, tennis and NCSEM facilities. This is the biggest facility to be built in Sheffield in a generation and we are grateful to our funding partners who are supporting the build costs.
“Our partnership with the National Centre for Sport and Exercise Medicine will offer a major opportunity to bring together health services and activity under one roof. This concept will be also be adopted at Concord Sports Centre and the planned North Active complex in High Green”
Coun Bowler added: “With plans also being worked up for a new pool with fitness and health facilities in High Green and redevelopment work already started at Concord, this is the city’s biggest investment in new leisure facilities for many years.”
The NCSEM money is part of £10m of Olympic legacy funding being invested into Sheffield to try and enable more people to become active.
Sir Andrew Cash, Chief Executive of Sheffield Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, added: “The plans for the National Centre for Sport and Exercise Medicine at the Graves HQ are yet another significant step towards changing the culture to make it easier for everyone to be active every day, and shows that we are serious about transforming Sheffield into the most active city in the UK.
“Using exercise as part of a patient’s recovery and rehabilitation as well as using it to prevent ill health has been proven to have significant benefits and Sheffield will be looking to take advantage of this through the facilities within the Graves development as well as those at Concord and North Active.”