Central Bedfordshire Council news and press releases

Ceremony marks ‘topping out’ of new Dunstable Centre

11 July 2018

Construction of the new Dunstable Centre reached another milestone this week, with a 'Topping Out Ceremony' to celebrate the building construction reaching its highest point.

The topping-out ceremony took place yesterday (Tuesday 10 July) at the Dunstable site, which is in Court Drive. Attendees from Central Bedfordshire Council and other key organisations took the opportunity to have a tour of the construction site.

At a time when leisure centres and libraries across the country are closing, we are proud to be investing in new and improved facilities that will help our residents' health and wellbeing and secure services in the town. 

The £20.1million centre is on-track to be opened in the winter 2018/2019. With £1m National Lottery funding from Sport England, the building will be a state-of-the-art community hub that will provide a new leisure facility, new library, accommodation for a new Citizens Advice service, and day-care for adults with learning disabilities.

Councillor Ian Dalgarno, Executive Member for Community Services at Central Bedfordshire Council, said: “At a time when leisure centres and libraries across the country are closing, we are investing in new and improved facilities that will help our residents' health and wellbeing.

"We are therefore delighted to celebrate reaching this key milestone in the redevelopment of this building. Works on the centre are well underway, with the building almost weather tight. We now have one complete building again, with the new buildings now fully connected to the existing ones. The new roofs have been progressing well, with the roof over the swimming pool and sports hall now complete."

"The previous leisure centre and library were no longer fit for purpose or cost effective to run. Both required substantial improvements, so we embarked on a comprehensive redevelopment of the old leisure centre to create this new building instead. By bringing services together under one roof, the new combined facility will reduce running costs, while providing more flexible services to the community, such as improved opening hours for public services.

Once complete, the new facility will boast a modern leisure centre with a 100-station gym, 4 studios, 25-metre swimming pool, and a learner pool with a new viewing gallery. There are new changing rooms for the swimming pools, and two more new changing rooms: one on the ground floor to service the sports hall, squash courts and studio space; and one on the first floor for the gym. The centre will also include a café and a brand-new, fully accessible ground floor library, with a new digital offer including public computers, iPads and a gaming zone, flexible space for activities, a children’s zone, and new facilities for teenagers.

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