Overwhelming support for new Oasis in Hunstanton
- By Elaine Bird
- 17 June 2022
Cabinet will be asked to approve £100,000 to work up the detailed proposals after the Oasis was named as the preferred project for an application for Levelling Up funding.
A report will be going to the borough council’s cabinet on Friday 24 June proposing that a detailed plan for a new leisure centre in Hunstanton should be developed and submitted to the Government for funds.
A survey asking people what they thought of the Oasis has shown there would be strong local support for a proposal to redevelop it.
Cllr Stuart Dark MBE, leader of the borough council, said: “I want to thank the 1,040 people who took part in our survey to find out what they thought of the Oasis. We appreciate you taking the time to help us.
“The results are clear: the current leisure centre is important to local people but there is a strong appetite for a new centre with better facilities that would increase year-round use and create an important health and wellbeing asset.
“This gives me a lot of confidence that there is local support for the idea.
“Officers considered a range of possible funding bids but this has been recommended as the preferred option and, having heard what local people have said, I am really looking forward to discussing it with colleagues.”
The report proposes a replacement for the Oasis leisure centre as the borough’s preferred option for an application for Levelling Up funding of up to £20million.
It notes that the current, ageing, facility will require significant maintenance investment in the short-medium term, while a new, more energy efficient, building would have lower running costs. It identifies a range of benefits from a new facility, including enhanced employment opportunities, an increase in participation and the knock-on benefit to reducing isolation.
The report also notes the high level of engagement for the project indicated by the recent survey, with nearly two-thirds of respondents wanting to be kept informed of progress. It identified a significant number of potential new users, as the condition and range of current facilities were significant factors in why people do not use it now.
Several options for Levelling Up applications were considered, with the recommended option being to make the Oasis the preferred scheme. The cabinet will be asked to approve a budget of £100,000 to work up detailed proposals.
In T&A's report of 27th May (and our web statistics recorded that just over 13,000 people read it) we explained that as a thank you for taking part in the survey, there was a chance for respondents to enter a prize draw and win £100 in shopping vouchers. We can now announce that he winner of the shopping vouchers was Thomas Wallace of Hunstanton.