Newham

Balaam Leisure Centre Consultation

Balaam Leisure Centre has been closed since December 2018 following the discovery of a water leak through the concrete pool tank which also forms the ceiling of the basement gym.

We are consulting on options for the future of Balaam Leisure Centre.

Background

Balaam Leisure Centre is the oldest of the Council’s four leisure centres. It opened in 1983 and the building is now quite run down and approaching the end of its design life. Because the centre is nearing the end of its life, the site has been allocated for housing provision in the Local Plan.

T
he leisure centre has been closed since 21 December 2018, when concrete fell from the underside of the training pool through to the basement gym. Major repair works are needed.


 
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Use of the leisure centre

Balaam Leisure Centre attracted around 200,000 visits per annum and at the point of closure there were 2,500 Health and Fitness Direct Debit members. Since the closure, these members have been given three choices - move to another leisure centre with no increase in membership fees, freeze their membership or cancel their membership. As of September 2019, there were 1,336 members remaining.
 
 

Consultation Proposals

We are keen to hear your views on what should happen next. However it is important to highlight the context of these proposals. The Balaam Leisure Centre site is allocated in the council’s Local Plan for future housing development from 2028/29. The Local Plan has already been subject to extensive public consultation.

So the proposals in this consultation should be considered as interim measures until the site is used for housing development.

Your views and opinions are important to us and will help shape the future of the leisure provision in the area. This questionnaire should take about 10 minutes to complete.

This consultation is open until Wednesday 27 November. Please ensure any paper copies are returned to your library, community centre or leisure centre by this date. Late submissions may not be considered. If you have any questions, or would like to make further comments, please email carly.clarke@newham.gov.uk​ before Wednesday 27 November.

 
 


What are we proposing?

We are proposing a number of options, outlined below. Each of these has an estimated timescale and budget. A draft equalities impact assessment has been undertaken and will be updated and published after this consultation.

It
should be noted that this location has been designated as an area for housing development in the Local Plan, and so all of the options below would be interim measures until 2028/29.


Option 1

  • Concrete repairs, with estimated longevity of 5-10 years
  • Reinstatement of basement gym and ground floor studio only
  • Refit of ground floor and basement changing
  • Provision of platform lift
  • Closure of main pool hall
Option 1 would take approximately 95 weeks (22 months) and would cost approximately £883,000


Option 2

  • Concrete repairs, with estimated longevity of 5-10 years
  • Reinstatement of basement gym and ground floor studio only
  • Refit of ground floor and basement changing
  • Provision of platform lift
  • Conversion of existing training pool area to studio space 
  • Closure of main pool hall
Option 2 would take approximately 103 weeks (24 months) and would cost approximately £1,099,000


Option 3

  • Concrete repairs, with estimated longevity of 10+ years
  • Reinstatement of basement gym, ground floor studio and training pool only 
  • Refit of ground floor and basement changing
  • Provision of platform lift 
  • Closure of main pool hall
Option 3 would take approximately 125 weeks (29 months) and would cost approximately £2,483,000.

I
f the main pool hall is closed, an alternative use could be found for this space. However, this would cost an additional £670,000 to £790,000.


Option 4

  • Permanent closure - closure and demolition to ground and bring forward the redevelopment of the site for housing


How can I get involved?

Online survey

We are keen to hear your views on the above proposals.
If you have any questions or would like to request a paper copy of the questions, please email carly.clarke@newham.gov.uk. Paper copies will also be available in libraries.

 
 

Meetings

 
We are holding two public meetings where you can ask questions and give us your views on the proposed options. The meetings will be held in Plaistow Library on:

Thursday 7 November 10.30am to 12noon
Tuesday 19 November 6.30 to 8pm

Please arrive about 15 minutes before the meeting is due to start. Both of the meetings will follow the same outline, so you only need to come to one of them.
If you are interested in attending, please register your interest​.


 
 


What happens next?

Once the consultation closes, responses will be analysed and a recommendation will be made to Cabinet. Cabinet will make a decision in February 2020 taking into account the consultation responses.



 
 

Frequently asked questions

Balaam FAQs​

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