Half a dozen leisure centres in East Lancashire are among more than 300 across the country to receive a slice of a £60 million funding boost.

The six swimming pools are among 13 in Lancashire to get funding from the Swimming Pool Support Fund, aimed at ensuring centres’ long-term financial sustainability by reducing running costs through improved energy efficiency.

They have received a total of more than £1.2 million for the investments, which will provide upgrades to existing sports centres across the region.

This includes new heating systems, solar panels, improved insulation and more, all aimed at keeping pools open so the public can continue to benefit from the positive impacts on physical and mental health of swimming, and ensuring children can continue learning to swim.

In Blackburn with Darwen, £120,218 of Department of Culture, Media and Sport funding is being handed to Darwen Leisure Centre.

It will be used to install a combined heat and power system at the town centre facility, as well as installing variable speed fans.

Lancashire Telegraph: Hyndburn Leisure Centre in ChurchHyndburn Leisure Centre in Church (Image: Newsquest)

In Church, Hyndburn Leisure Centre is to receive £241,447 of National Lottery / Sport England funding, to pay for installing additional metering and monitoring software, and variable speed fans.

It's future hung in the balance after it missed out on a £370,000 bid last year for funding to support the running of the leisure trust.

Over at Marls Pit Leisure Centre in Rawtenstall, a new air handling unit and new pool covers will be paid for through £290,000 of funding from Sport England.

This follows £66,000 it received in November from phase one of the fund. 

At Padiham Leisure Centre, £187,549 of DCMS cash will pay for a micro-filtration system and variable speed fans to improve the venue.

Pendle Wavelengths, in Leeds Road, Nelson, is being handed £342,126 of Sport England money which will pay for new solar panels, and an upgrade to the pool hall windows to install triple glazing windows.

The swimming pool also received just shy of £234,000 in November in phase one of the fund, when West Craven Leisure Centre was also handed £119,000.

Lancashire Telegraph: Marls Pit Leisure Centre in RawtenstallMarls Pit Leisure Centre in Rawtenstall (Image: Google)

In the Ribble Valley, Clitheroe’s Ribblesdale Pool and Edisford Sports Complex is to receive £25,000 from the DCMS to pay for new pool covers.

The Government has said it is stepping in to help council-run leisure centres stay open following sharp rises in energy costs in recent years.

It’s the second phase of the Swimming Pool Support Fund, following £20m of funding dished out in November, meaning 442 swimming pools across 367 council areas have now been supported.

Lancashire Telegraph: Padiham Leisure Centre poolPadiham Leisure Centre pool (Image: Padiham Leisure Centre)

Stuart Andrew, sports minister, said: “Millions of people swim every year in England, but increased energy costs mean some pools are struggling financially.

“This further £60 million of support from the Government and Sport England will ensure hundreds of swimming pools can lower their operating costs in the long run, and continue to provide an important service for communities across the country.”

Lisa Dodd-Mayne, Sport England executive director for place, added: “Swimming pools and leisure centres are vital community resources and are enormously important in helping people to be physically active.

Lancashire Telegraph: Pendle WavelengthsPendle Wavelengths

“Many pools have faced a real and significant threat to their survival this year, as local authorities and operators have battled the challenge of increased energy and wider costs, weakened reserves and difficulties with retaining staff.

“Sport England is proud of the role we’ve played in supporting these facilities through this difficult period.

“We hope today’s funding announcement will enable more public pools to improve their energy efficiency to be more environmentally and financially sustainable so they remain available for future generations to enjoy.”

Lancashire Telegraph: Ribblesdale Pool in ClitheroeRibblesdale Pool in Clitheroe

Elsewhere in Lancashire, the following leisure centres are also receiving investment from the Swimming Pool Support Fund:

  • Chorley’s All Seasons Leisure Centre - £181,500 for solar panels and installation of additional metering and monitoring software
  • Fleetwood YMCA Leisure Centre - £141,212 for solar panels and shower flow restrictors
  • Fulwood Leisure Centre, Preston – £226,552 for solar panels and replacement of gas boilers
  • Leyland Leisure Centre - £286,000 for pool covers and triple glazing windows in the pool hall
  • Lune Valley Swimming Pool, Lancaster - £75,108 for heat recovery to air handling units and solar panels
  • Nye Bevan Pool, Skelmersdale - £23,760 for variable speed pumps and plant room insulation
  • Palatine Leisure Centre, Blackpool – £212,190 for solar panels and a new gas boilers
  • St Annes YMCA Pool and Gym, Lytham St Annes - £220,000 for solar panels and replacement of gas boilers

Lancashire has received a total of £2,572,662 in funding from the latest round of grants.