New £21m leisure centre will be closed during meetings at Pontefract Racecourse

A new £21m leisure centre at Pontefract Park will be closed when fixtures are taking place at the neighbouring racecourse, it has emerged.

Friday, 17th January 2020, 3:06 pm
Updated Friday, 17th January 2020, 3:07 pm
Around a dozen race meetings are held at Pontefract Racecourse every year. The leisure centre will have to close at least two hours before each one, when it opens.

It means the facility could be partly shut for around 13 days a year, given the frequency of events at Pontefract Races. Most take place between April and October.

The condition was attached when the leisure centre was given planning permission last year, to avoid parking problems on race days.

It can remain open well before and after meetings, however.

Wakefield Council's service director for leisure, Julie Russell, said: The decision of the planning authority was that the Leisure and Wellbeing Hub, the tennis courts and 3G pitch will close during any racecourse meeting taking place at Pontefract Racecourse, closing a minimum of two hours prior to the start of any racecourse meeting and remaining closed for two hours following the closure of the meeting.

"This is to ensure there is sufficient parking for events at the racecourse and is beyond the control of the council."

The centre is due to be open towards the end of this year, but work on the site was hit by a flooding incident before Christmas.

In a YouTube video showing how the development is progressing earlier this month, the council said that that water has now been cleared.

An insurance claim is expected to be lodged.

Local Democracy Reporting Service