DEPUTY leader of Wiltshire Council, cllr John Thomson has said that the future of Christie Miller Sports Centre will be revealed in April.
At the Melksham Area Board meeting last week, cllr Thomson described the sports centre as ‘hanging by a thread’ and said that he was not willing to spend money from the campus budget to keep it open.
Since the decision was made in December to close the sports centre as part of the business case for the Melksham Health and Wellbeing centre, it has been unclear as to when this would happen and which of the many services at the centre would be found a new home.
“I’ve been looking at the costs to the keep the centre going and it’s hanging on by a thread,” said cllr Thomson. “The price to keep it going in the short-term, if we have a major issue, is £800,000 to £1million. I’m just not prepared to spend that money as that comes out of my budget to deliver the campus and that’s what I want to deliver for Melksham.
“So we’re actually having a look at what the issue is, can we keep it limping on or not, what other alternative provision can we provide in Melksham for some of the services provided at Christie Miller?
“We will have some of that information very soon and I will bring that back to the area board.
“It is likely that if we have a major storm, the roof is in a very precarious position, and if we have a storm that will be likely what triggers it. But I don’t have all the information about where we can put alternative provision in the town or whether the centre can limp on.
“But I don’t think it’s worth spending that sort of money on that building for a 2-3 year period. I think that it is a terrible waste of public money and is better spent on the new provision.”
The next Melksham Area Board meeting will be held on Wednesday 11th April.