• Antonia Ryan

No sports hall for Houghton due to bad planning

Cllr Ryan raised, on behalf of residents, the lack of sports hall in the new leisure centre plans (speech below).

The response from the leader was we have an agreement with the new school provision to use their facilities, I called this out immediately for misleading this Council as after speaking to the Trust there is, in fact, NO agreement in place and if it were it would be extremely limited due to the safeguarding of children.

This oversight is completely unacceptable and our town deserves better than a rushed through impractical plan.

I urge residents to take part in the upcoming consultations.

In October, we were told that the Chancellor of the Exchequer announced Houghton Regis had been successful in their bid for the levelling up fund and will be getting their - much needed and much entitled to - leisure centre. [*]

This was met with much excitement from residents.

The recent published application shows in fact Houghton Regis is set to lose out and the new building will have less facilities than our existing Leisure Centre AND will have no sports hall at all. But even worse still, our new Leisure Centre is smaller than our neighbouring town.

Both myself and residents are shocked and upset about this and when we have questioned officers we were told we never expected to win this bid and as such it had been rushed through.


There is sufficient evidence showing the detrimental impact on towns when sports facilities are not available.

As this has been a clear oversight and in order not to cause further embarrassment to the Council can the executive tell me how he is going to fund a sports hall for our ever-growing town.

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