Artists impression of proposed leisure centre

The proposed replacement for Cascades Leisure Centre in Thong Lane, Gravesend, received the go ahead from planners at a meeting of the authority’s planning committee last night (Wednesday).

Artists impression of proposed leisure centre

The committee considered the proposal to demolish and rebuild Cascades, including the demolition of the main building and Regan’s Bar and its replacement with a new leisure centre, outdoor play area, netball courts, trim trail and kick about area.

It unanimously agreed the decision be delegated to officers to grant permission subject to the agreement of pre-commencement conditions and the finalisation of planning conditions.

The new centre will include:

  • A 25 metre, eight lane main pool
  • Training pool
  • Aqua play splash pad area with water flumes
  • Spectator seating and casual viewing areas
  • Wet and dry area changing rooms
  • Soft play and clip ‘n’ climb zone
  • Café seating area
  • Two squash courts
  • Sports hall incorporating six 27 x 35 metre sports courts and bleacher seating
  • Fitness suite
  • Spin studio
  • Two multi-use studios.

Outside facilities would include:

  • Children’s play area
  • Active play area
  • Outdoor gym and trim trail
  • Tennis and netball court

Inside new leisure centre

The report to committee members highlighted the proposal has the support of Sport England and three letters of support had been received, with just one of objection.

Cllr John Burden, Leader of Gravesham Borough Council, said: “This decision is a very important step on the road to a new leisure centre for the Borough and was by no means a formality.

“It was considered in detail by both planning officers and members of the planning committee, who took into account comments from a range of statutory consultees and local people.

“This modern new leisure centre will provide local residents with the facilities they want and deserve, and will be built to the highest environmental standards, ensuring it contributes to our net zero ambitions.”

Cllr Burden added the next step would be to engage a main contractor for the construction of the new Cascades.

He said: “We have already held provisional conversations with a number of contractors with strong track records in this field and I am confident we will be entering into an agreement with the right one following the tender procedure in the very near future.

“I hope current and potential users of our leisure centre are as excited as I am that the promise of a new, modern, family-orientated centre is now closer than ever.”

New leisure centre gym

Published: Thursday, 2nd March 2023