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Disused club substitutes for fire-hit Abbey Leisure Centre
A NEW gym and fitness facility is to be set up in one of Selby’s empty buildings within weeks, the council has confirmed.
The temporary facility, which will include gym equipment and offer a range of fitness classes, will be set up at the former Walker’s Bingo Club in Portholme Crescent, as a replacement for the Selby Abbey Leisure Centre, which burned down two months ago.
Last week, The Press reported no cause had been determined for the fire, and it is still unclear whether the centre can be repaired, or will need to be completely rebuilt.
Now, the council has confirmed the bingo club, which has been up for sale for several months, will be refitted with a state-of-the-art 85-station gym and a 78 square metre fitness studio until a replacement leisure centre is developed.
Stuart Murray, chief executive of Wigan Leisure and Culture Trust, which runs leisure services for the council, said: “Although this will be a temporary gym, the facilities will be absolutely first rate. It actually gives us a greater floor space than we had in the leisure centre gym so we’ll be able to offer greater choice and availability.
“The council has also asked us to look at whether we can provide some bingo services from the Pavilion at Selby Park. We’re looking at this now and will make an announcement in the near future.”
Council leader Mark Crane said: “These new facilities will allow us to provide a great service between now and the reopening of a new leisure centre in the town, which is what we’re committed to delivering.
“The leisure centre fire was hugely upsetting, especially in light of the £1 million refit that had recently taken place. But straight away we started to think about possible alternative options for gym facilities and we’ve turned around this deal extremely quickly.”
Costs for the deal have been met by the council’s insurers, and work has already begun to refit the building, with an aim to have it open in June.