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The Save the Deepings Leisure Centre group asks South Kesteven District Council for £850,000





A community group is bidding for a £850,000 lifeline to save a leisure centre closed by a council two-and-a-half years ago.

The future of the Deepings Leisure Centre is back up for discussion at South Kesteven District Council this week.

The facility closed in 2021 due to serious safety concerns caused by a leaky roof and has stood empty ever since.

Deepings Leisure Centre campaigners Coun Phil Dilks, Sam Peeroo, Andy Pelling, Paul Swift, Donna Buckland, Roy and Sue Stephenson and Coun Ashley Baxter outside the closed Deepings Leisure Centre. Photo: David Pearson
Deepings Leisure Centre campaigners Coun Phil Dilks, Sam Peeroo, Andy Pelling, Paul Swift, Donna Buckland, Roy and Sue Stephenson and Coun Ashley Baxter outside the closed Deepings Leisure Centre. Photo: David Pearson

After agreeing to refurbish it, South Kesteven District Council ditched plans to spend £10.7 million on repairs to the leisure centre in Deeping St James claiming they could not afford it and handed responsibility back to owner Lincolnshire County Council.

In a bid to find a business or group to run the leisure centre, Lincolnshire County Council put it up for sale. However, if a buyer – who adheres to the conditions set out by the council - is not found by the summer the it could be demolished, and the land transferred to the Anthem Schools Trust, which runs the Deepings School.

The Save the Deepings Leisure Centre group, which was set up by residents wanting the site to be refurbished and reopened, has submitted an offer and is now calling on South Kesteven District Council for one-off funding of £850,000.

A protest was held after South Kesteven District Council announced the closure. Photo: David Pearson
A protest was held after South Kesteven District Council announced the closure. Photo: David Pearson

Look inside the empty Deepings Leisure Centre

Chairperson of the group, Virginia Moran, who lives in the Deepings and is a district councillor who opposed the closure, will put her argument forward at a finance and culture scrutiny meeting on Tuesday ahead of councillors voting at an extraordinary full council meeting on Thursday.

Speaking as a group member rather than a councillor, Virginia said: “It’s going to be D-Day, although split over two days.”

She added: “It is nerve-racking.

Deepings Leisure Centre
Deepings Leisure Centre

“Someone asked me how long this leisure centre issue has been going on for. It’s been five years since I have become a councillor and pushing in one way or another, either to get a new leisure centre as promised or have it refurbished.

“I’ve failed at everything, maybe this one will happen.”

If funding is given, The Save the Deepings Leisure Centre group will move forward with plans to reopen the site.

Virginia Moran
Virginia Moran

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In his first column after becoming leader of South Kesteven District Council, Richard Cleaver (Ind), said: “We will do what we can to support the community group which is seeking to reopen and run the leisure centre.”



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