A SPORTS and leisure hall for Southwell looks like going ahead following the Newark District Council Meeting held on January 5th, when the financial arrangements for provision of a hall were unanimously agreed.
That this has come about, is largely due to a combination of efforts by various individuals and bodies in the town who have continued to prepare, plan and raise funds for a hall that at times seemed a very remote possibility. The Southwell Leisure Hall Committee under the chairmanship of one of our County Councillors, Mr Brendan Haigh, initiated the present proposals after the Committee had approached Messrs. Loach Builders who produced plans for a hall at a very competitive price. There then followed consultations with all parties at the District Council which produced the recommendations passed at the January meeting.
The hall will be administered in association with the present Southwell Recreation Centre by the Centre Trustees under the control of the Warden, Mrs Daphne James. It will be built on land adjacent to the present swimming pool which is largely owned by the Southwell Parish Council, and at a meeting of the Parish Council on January 6th it was agreed in principle that this land would be transferred to the Trustees to enable the hall to be built. It’s siting is such that it will not affect the areas already designated for sports pitches and it will include changing facilities for the users of these pitches. Car Parking arrangements, required in the planning permission given to the Parish Council for use of the land as playing fields, will be incorporated into the overall provision of car parking for the hall and playing fields together.
The hall itself will be linked to the present facilities using a single entrance to provide efficient handling and control of users, with provision for a special entrance to changing facilities in the hall for those involved in outside sports. It will be of four badminton court size and will be marked to alow usage for a variety of sports. The total length of the hall on one side will be infilled to provide changing, heating and storage facilities on the ground floor level and further changing facilities together with a lounge and bar from which the sports area can be viewed on the second floor.
It will initially have provision with curtaining or similar arrangement to divide it so that only 1/4 or 3/4 of the hall need be used to allow flexibility for clubs and organisations etc. who may not wish to use the area of the complete hall. There will also be provision for a certain amount of sports equipment and furnishing and further additions will no doubt be made in the future by the Trustees and users on a self help basis.
There is no doubt that this sports and leisure hall will fill a much needed requirement for all ages in Southwell and the surrounding villages and will significantly improve the scope for many forms of leisure and sporting activity.