Plans kept afloat on first swimming pool

Chairman of the Mytholmroyd Community Association Richard Marshall (left) with vice chairman Geoffrey Woodhead.
Chairman of the Mytholmroyd Community Association Richard Marshall (left) with vice chairman Geoffrey Woodhead.

Plans to build a new swimming pool in Hebden Royd have been given the go-ahead after decades of campaigning.

Planning chiefs approved the scheme after Mytholmroyd Community Association amended earlier proposals for the leisure centre cutting the previous estimated building costs by a third.

The group is splashing out £1.2m on the new single storey swimming pool and work will begin on November 1.

The new Royd Pool and Fitness Centre will be housed in a 850m squared single storey building and include a swimming pool, aerobics room, gym and changing facilities.

To reduce the previous costs, the roof of the development in the car park at Mytholmroyd Community Centre at Caldene Avenue, Mytholmroyd, will no longer be ‘green’ and instead, will be slightly pitched at 0.7 metres higher.

The total number of windows will be less in the east elevation and proposed building materials will differ.

NJSR Chartered Architects LLP, of Southport, have designed the latest plans.

Architect Ian Volland, said: “The roof will no longer boast planters of plants and there are minor changes to elevation treatment which will be decided in conjunction with the planning authority. The changes have now brought the build back into budget.

“The public will be pleased to know the floor plan is identical.”

The work will be carried out by Elland firm Marshall Building Contractors Ltd who expected the building should be finished by August 2015.

“We have worked with the proposers to create a build which is in budget. The amendments affect the external elevation of the site - no changes have been been to the internal building,” said managing director of Marshall’s, John Marshall.

Mytholmroyd Community Association has been campaigning for years to open a swimming pool in the area for public use.

Association secretary Calderdale councillor Richard Marshall (Con, Luddendenfoot) said he and other committee members feel delighted that plans are finally coming to fruition.

“This has been a long sorry saga. When Hebden Bridge council offices were built in 1897, the council said there was enough land to build a swimming pool - that’s how long we have been trying to build a swimming pool.”

Speaking after the meeting Coun Marshall said: “This is now our fourth application to the council at a cost of £18,000.

“But, with experienced Marshall contractors at the helm, work will now go ahead. It’s something the community has been waiting a very long time for about we’re all very excited about its eventual opening.”

Members of the planning committee unanimously passed the scheme at the meeting on Tuesday night.

The site has a chequered planning history.

In recent years, an application for a community swimming pool was refused due to flood risk and design and appearance, in 2007.

A year later, an amended scheme to the 2007 application was refused on flood risk grounds. But, later that year, in November 2008, a subsequent scheme for a community swimming pool was approved and on July 30, 2013, full planning permission was approved on a one storey swimming pool and gym with a flat roof. On Tuesday, the Calderdale Council Planning Committee approved amendements to these plans.