North West

Fitness first: Improving Marl Pits Sports Complex

A £2.6 million project to extend and improve leisure facilities at Marl Pits Sports Complex has been completed.

Work began on the Rossendale-based project in February 2012 and officially reached completion, on time and within budget, on October 30th 2012.

Kier was the main contractor on the project, whilst KKA Architecture provided all architectural services on the site. Funding for the project was provided through the Prudential.

The project comprised the erection of a single-storey extension to house changing facilities, office accommodation, a fitness studio and a group fitness room. Alterations were also made to the internal layout of the existing building to improve pool side provisions with the refurbishment of the existing male and female changing area and the addition of accessible and unisex changing facilities.

The new extension was built from blockwork with a render finish and curtain walling, whilst the roof was formed in a single-ply roofing system with welded standing seam trim and feature soffit, with an aluminium flashing detail to the gable ends. The extension is L-shaped in design and measures 31.2m (south elevation) x 36.9m (east elevation) with a building depth of 11.1m, providing a total area of 612 sq m.

In total the complex, located on Newchurch Road, now covers an area of 1,694 sq m.

Commenting on the importance of the Marl Pits project and its legacy, Rossendale Council Leader, Alyson Barnes, said:

“This not only provides improved sports and leisure opportunities for local people but will help to make publicly funded leisure facilities in Rossendale more sustainable.

“The improvements at Marl Pits will provide some great new opportunities for local people to get fitter and healthier.”

As part of the project some landscaping work was also undertaken on the site which included the reconfiguration of the existing car parking area to include provisions for disabled drivers, parent & child parking and motorcyclists. Four multipurpose outdoor pitches – located towards the rear of the development’s swimming pool building – were also installed on the site.

Martin Kay, Rossendale Leisure Trust, said:

“The project forms part of Rossendale’s wider programme of leisure investment, aimed at delivering first class public leisure to the Borough. The proposal was in response to the Rossendale Leisure Review and supports the Council’s pledge to improve health issues through exercise.

“The successful completion of the project has created new, modern, fit-for-purpose sport and leisure facilities and high quality buildings which the borough of Rossendale can be proud of. We have provided services which meet the ever-increasing needs of customers and will increase customer satisfaction of sports and leisure facilities.”

Martin added:

“Marls Pits is a huge sporting footprint for the community of Rossendale. Like many existing and traditional sports complexes the facility has its issues and its areas that needed support. The improved car parking scheme coupled with the new facilities on the swimming pool side hopefully shows all users that we are serious in supporting the whole scheme whilst ensuring that things start working towards sustainable and affordable leisure provisions.

“On a pure business footing, the work conducted on the Marls Pits Sports Complex project ensures that the pool is sustainable and will contribute significantly to the overall business plan for the Leisure Trust.”

In addition to Marl Pits, Rossendale Leisure Trust manages a range of facilities including Haslingden Sports Centre and Haslingden Swimming Pool. The Trust has an ever expanding development team, working across a variety of sport and healthy lifestyle schemes, with projects ranging from the highly successful ‘Girls in Sport’ to ‘Sportivate’.

For more information about Rossendale Leisure Trust, please visit:

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