Scartho Baths closure: Council urges people to back new pool and not look to the past
THE council wants people to "move on" from the closure of Scartho Baths and check out plans for a new pool to replace it – before it submits a planning application in April.
Councillor Mick Burnett North East Lincolnshire Council's (NELC) portfolio holder for tourism and culture (which includes sport) announced it will release designs for Grimsby's new swimming pool next week.
The £8.4-million pool in Cromwell Road will eventually replace Grimsby Swimming Pool (Scartho Baths) which more than 7,000 people signed a petition to save after the closure was announced.
However, after a second consultation process – which many claimed was inadequate – councillors made the same decision again.
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NELC is now asking the public to comment on designs for a new pool in the consultation and Councillor Burnett (Lab, Croft Baker) said: "This is about plans for a brilliant new pool – not about revisiting the decision to close the one in Scartho. That decision has already been made – twice – and we need to move on.
"We are now moving forward with the next phase in the planning process and want to hear from as many people as possible."
NELC will use comments from the public to adapt the designs before submitting a planning application – which it hopes to do some time in April.
However, Mr Burnett's refusal to re-open the case on Scartho Baths will anger many campaigners who heavily oppose the closure.
Chair of Save Scartho Baths Group Richard Macklam has urged councillors to get round the negotiation table one last time with residents and MPs Martin Vickers and Austin Mitchell, who have spoken publicly against the closure.
Mr Macklam said: "The problem is that they have gone past the point of no return and don't want to listen to objections or someone will get egg on their face. When eminent people like our MPs even criticise the decisions and suggest we could get it cheaper elsewhere, I can't think of any other reason why they won't re-think.
"Refurbishing the current pool would be cheaper in a time of austerity and it would remain central – I just can't work out why they are so intent on building it on Cromwell Road."
3D Models will go on display at Scartho Baths from noon to 3pm, and Grimsby Auditorium from 5pm to 8pm, on Wednesday, March 6.
You can also view them by visiting the planning section on www.nelincs.gov.uk
For past stories on this go to www.thisisgrimsby.co.uk and click on this headline