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HomeCommunityIslington Council Seeks Input on the Future of Sobell Leisure Centre

Islington Council Seeks Input on the Future of Sobell Leisure Centre

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Islington Council has initiated a public consultation to gather opinions and ideas regarding the transformation of Sobell Leisure Centre, and you are invited to participate! In August 2022, a devastating flood caused extensive damage, rendering the entire ground floor, including the trampoline park, soft play area, ice rink, squash courts, and sports hall unusable.

As part of its commitment to creating a more inclusive borough where everyone can enjoy the physical, mental, and social benefits of exercise, the council aims to reimagine the facilities offered by Sobell Leisure Centre, making it appealing to individuals of all ages and backgrounds.

Organisation operating the centre on behalf of the council has launched an exciting public consultation on plans to modernize the facility according to the needs of the local community. The proposed changes may include:

  • Introducing a new active zone with innovative, state-of-the-art facilities that cater to people of all ages. This zone would complement the existing popular trampoline park.
  • Creating a dedicated area for babies and toddlers within the active zone, alongside a “junior” section.
  • Establishing a “ninja warrior” style inflatable and trampoline zone for older children and teenagers.
  • Upgrading the squash courts and gym facilities.
  • Developing a welcoming café area with seating.

Residents can provide their thoughts, ideas, and insights on the future of Sobell Leisure Centre. The public consultation will run for six weeks, concluding on Friday, July 7. You can participate by completing the online survey, which is also available at all Islington libraries and community centres.

Cllr Nurullah Turan, Islington Council’s Executive Member for Health and Social Care, expressed the council’s determination to create a more equal and active borough, ensuring that all residents can access the physical and mental benefits of exercise. The proposed facilities at Sobell Leisure Centre aim to support and empower individuals from diverse backgrounds in improving their overall well-being. Additionally, the council aims to address childhood obesity by providing fun and welcoming environments for young people to engage in physical activities.

The council emphasizes the importance of resident involvement in shaping the future of Sobell Leisure Centre. They are keen to hear from individuals of all ages and backgrounds regarding the desired facilities, services, and programs. Your input can help shape the centre’s offerings, so make sure to share your thoughts and ideas before Friday, July 7.

To ensure the financial sustainability of the reopened Sobell Leisure Centre while meeting the needs of the local community, the council and GLL have made the difficult decision not to rebuild the ice rink, which was deemed unsalvageable after the flood. The ice rink had already been incurring an annual loss of £250,000, and its usage was relatively low, averaging around 600 visitors per week compared to 2,000 visitors per week at the trampoline park. With the opening of the new state-of-the-art rink at Lee Valley, which has doubled in size, the number of visitors to Sobell Leisure Centre’s ice rink was expected to decrease further. By repurposing the space and implementing the proposed

changes, the council and GLL anticipate that usage of the centre will rise to 250,000 people per year, appealing to a broader demographic than before.

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