Construction has begun on a £12 million state-of-the-art leisure and sports complex in Clayton-le-Moors.

Councillors and officers from Hyndburn Borough Council met with clubs and leisure developers from Alliance Leisure and the ISG construction team on Wednesday (March 13) to celebrate the start of the works on the project at Wilsons Playing Fields.

It has been funded by the borough council as part of its leisure transformation plans and developed in partnership with Sport England.

When complete, facilities will include a four-lane 25m swimming pool, a fitness suite, sauna and steam room, a group exercise studio, a café, a large changing village, and dedicated changing facilities for teams making use of the outdoor sports facilities.

The new facility will replace Mercer Hall in Great Harwood, which is controversially being closed due to how costly repairs and maintenance of the historic building would be.

Speaking at the ceremony, leader of the council, Cllr Marlene Haworth, said: “It is very fitting that these significant development works fall in the 50th anniversary year for the dedication of Wilsons Playing Fields, ensuring the location will remain at the heart of the community’s active leisure and wellbeing provision for many years to come.

Lancashire Telegraph: Councillors, Sport England, construction team and Wheels For All at Wilson Sport Village ground breakingCouncillors, Sport England, construction team and Wheels For All at Wilson Sport Village ground breaking (Image: Hyndburn Borough Council)

“It’s fantastic to finally see a spade in the ground. This development reflects the council’s commitment to placing the health and well-being of our community at the heart of our ongoing strategy.

"In addition to creating new indoor active opportunities for everyone in the community, the building will add value to the existing outdoor facilities to create a leisure hub like no other in the local vicinity.”

The current site is used by a diverse range of clubs and organisations, including Wheels for All, an inclusive cycling programme for adults and children with disabilities.

Joe McTague, chief operating officer of Wheels for All, said: “We are thrilled to be involved in the ground breaking event for this exciting new facility.

"We have used the running track at Wilsons Playing Fields for more than 17 years, providing an inclusive cycling programme that gives people, regardless of age and ability, the opportunity to cycle on a regular basis.

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“We do this by providing support, guidance and specialist equipment. The new Sports Village, particularly the changing facilities and café will help us to expand our programme, providing more disabled people the opportunity to take part in sport and physical activity.”

The new building will also optimise energy efficiencies, with air source heat pumps, solar panels, and the utilisation of the latest Low and Zero Carbon Technologies supporting the council’s reduction strategy and ambitions to achieve net zero.

Works are being delivered through the UK Leisure Framework, managed by Denbighshire Leisure Ltd (DLL) and led by leisure development specialists Alliance Leisure, in consultation with the borough council and Hyndburn Leisure.

The work is expected to be completed in spring 2025.