Autumn date set for opening of new South Lake Leisure Centre

A date has been set for the opening of the new south lake leisure centre in Craigavon with the multi-million-pound facility to open its doors on November 2.

Tuesday, 28th July 2020, 12:22 pm
Updated Tuesday, 28th July 2020, 12:33 pm

The largest capital project to date undertaken by ABC Council, and among the largest in Northern Ireland, the new multi-use sports and leisure complex is described by the council as a major new flagship health and wellbeing destination.

Work on the facility was halted by the coronavirus outbreak. Since returning to site Farrans, the contractor in charge of the build, has ensured the contract is completed ready for opening in the Autumn.

Farrans has been spearheading the build since initial enabling works got under way early in 2018, creating 500 jobs on site during construction as part of a project which has delivered at least £6.5 million in direct wages to the local economy.

Located at the south side of Craigavon’s balancing lake, the facility is a landmark venue for the area and is situated within a pre-existing network of walking and cycling paths covering around three miles.

The council hopes the new leisure centre will welcome visitors from across the borough and beyond to its new 50-metre pool, a young children’s indoor leisure water feature, a 1,000m2 state-of-the-art gym, multiple studios, health and wellbeing suite, sensory room, eight-court sports halls, spin studio, soft play area and an on-site café.

It also incorporates an outdoor water sports provision offering a wide range of water based activities including windsurfing, water skiing and paddle sports.

The council says the scale of South Lake Leisure Centre has been future-proofed to meet the needs of a growing population and a raising demand from a range of leisure, amateur and professional sporting enthusiasts.

Lord Mayor of Armagh City, Banbridge and Craigavon, Councillor Kevin Savage, sai: “With a confirmed opening date just 14 weeks away, I am delighted that this stunning new centre - which will have fabulous facilities for everyone in the borough to access and enjoy - is almost complete.

“South Lake Leisure Centre provides a once-in-a-generation opportunity to transform and dramatically enhance the quality of health and leisure provision within the borough, providing community access for everyone to the best facilities available in the UK and Ireland.”

As part of the preparations for the official opening of South Lake Leisure Centre, interim arrangements have been agreed for leisure facilities in Portadown (Cascade Leisure Complex) and Brownlow (Craigavon Leisure Centre).

Cascades Leisure Complex will be open to the public for lane swimming only in August, remaining open until Saturday 10th October.

Craigavon Leisure Centre will remain open to the public for gym only until Monday 12th October. Waves Leisure Complex will be closed to the public. When all these facilities, which are approaching the end of their functional life close, leisure staff will begin their training at the new South Lake Leisure Centre building.