Sheffield aims to get moving on its £10m Olympic legacy

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Sheffield is preparing to roll out its £10m ‘Olympic legacy’ programme.

In addition to the £700,000 scheme to develop Concord Sports Centre at Shiregreen, details of two other developments are being finalised with a view to encouraging local people to get fitter and healthier.

Plans for a swimming pool on part of Thorncliffe recreation ground in High Green were confirmed last month, with a proposed 25 metre pool and a learner pool set to replace Chapeltown Baths. Chapeltown is due to remain open for 18 to 24 months, until the new pool opens.

Half of the £10m from the Government for Sheffield’s Centre for Sport and Exercise Medicine is being earmarked for the pool, with a proposed contribution from Ecclesfield Parish Council on its agenda tonight (Thursday).

Community campaigners who have kept open Stockbridge Leisure Centre say Sheffield City Council could have spent some of the money on Stocksbridge.

The council says it is under pressure from Sport England to ensure the new pool serves a wider catchment area, and its overall strategy, drawn up with Sport England, is to replace high cost, under-used venues, or those nearing the end of their life, with ventures that cost less, offer better facilities and have the potential to increase participation.

The third element of the Centre for Sport and Exercise Medicine - Loughborough and London are also getting one - will be a major overhaul of Graves Tennis and Leisure Centre. Plans have been in the air for years to replace the pool and to create more tennis courts, with the council initially looking for a private sector partner. Now Graves is in the hands of Sheffield International Venues.

Attention this week was on Concord where consultation and treatment rooms will be added, and a new reception area. It is hoped building work can begin in the spring.

Dr Rob Copeland Reader in Physical Activity and Health at Sheffield Hallam University and project manager of the Sheffield NCSEM, said it was part of “an innovative and ambitious programme” to shape the future of public health over the next 20 years.

The Sheffield centres will be run by the city’s two universities and the NHS.