Swimming pool at Blackbrook Pavilion, in Taunton, approved - work could start in January

Swimming pool at Blackbrook Pavilion, in Taunton, approved - work could start in January

Swimming pool at Blackbrook Pavilion, in Taunton, approved - work could start in January

First published in News

PLANS to build a new £5.3million swimming pool and spa at Blackbrook in Taunton got the go ahead on Wednesday, August 13, marking another milestone in the scheme to provide first class leisure facilities in the county town.

The pool and spa will be built on a site next to the existing leisure centre at Blackbrook and will replace the ageing pool in St James Street which has become increasingly expensive to maintain.

The development will see a 25m six-lane pool, a smaller learner pool, spa and treatment rooms, changing village, a café and kitchen and storage space.

The decision to build the pool complex follows an in-depth review of swimming provision in the borough that found a new pool was needed as the baths in St James Street pool were near the end of their life. Blackbrook was chosen as it already hosts the popular leisure centre.

Sports pitches close to the planned pool and spa will be retained and 'buffered' by a safety area to avoid any clash between the new buildings and the playing areas.

Concerns were raised by the Amateur Swimming Association (ASA) about the depth of the pool but their concerns were allayed by the reassurance that the pool depth will range from 0.9m to 1.2m.

Dense scrub near the site will need to be cleared. Some evidence that dormice may be present in that area has been found. A special licence will be needed to clear the undergrowth and a new habitat will be created for the tiny creatures.

The plans include space for car parking and space for coaches for school children using the pool.

Cllr Catherine Herbert, responsible for sports, parks and leisure, said: “I am delighted that we now have planning approval for the new pool and spa. This means we can now move to the next stage.

“Our aim as a council is to ensure Taunton Deane has first class leisure provision to complement our growth plans.

"We have recently upgraded the Station Road pool in Taunton, bringing it into the 21st century and have had some really positive comments from swimmers.

“Facilities at our pool in Wellington have also been improved.

"We must now look at what we can do for younger swimmers and club swimmers. St James Pool has served us well for decades but it really has reached its ‘sell-by’ date and needs replacing.

“The Blackbrook site already hosts the very popular leisure centre run by our partners Tone Leisure and a pool and spa will make it a brilliant leisure complex where people can enjoy all sorts of sports and relaxation from spa treatments to tennis.”

Now planning permission has been granted the council will look to award the contract in October with a potential start on site – weather permitting – in January 2015.

Comments (10)

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10:49am Fri 15 Aug 14

Somerset_BTGOG says...

Great idea, but in the wrong place.
Great idea, but in the wrong place. Somerset_BTGOG
  • Score: 0

11:02am Fri 15 Aug 14

ToytownTim says...

Why the wrong place?
And where else could it go?
Why the wrong place? And where else could it go? ToytownTim
  • Score: 2

12:16pm Fri 15 Aug 14

Somerset_BTGOG says...

Firepool is empty.

I 'd also question why £1million+ was wasted on the old Taunton pool when a new bigger pool/pools in the town centre could have been built.

It could have put Taunton on the map as a centre of sporting excellance in the South West.
Firepool is empty. I 'd also question why £1million+ was wasted on the old Taunton pool when a new bigger pool/pools in the town centre could have been built. It could have put Taunton on the map as a centre of sporting excellance in the South West. Somerset_BTGOG
  • Score: 3

10:03pm Sat 16 Aug 14

boliston says...

They should not allow any more "edge of town" development until ALL brownfield sites nearer the town centre have been developed.
They should not allow any more "edge of town" development until ALL brownfield sites nearer the town centre have been developed. boliston
  • Score: 6

8:03am Sun 17 Aug 14

Monument says...

Great idea and absolutely in the right place.

Why would you want to encourage more traffic into an already gridlocked town centre.
Great idea and absolutely in the right place. Why would you want to encourage more traffic into an already gridlocked town centre. Monument
  • Score: 3

6:15pm Sun 17 Aug 14

boliston says...

Monument wrote:
Great idea and absolutely in the right place.

Why would you want to encourage more traffic into an already gridlocked town centre.
Out of town development simply encourages people to drive to the facility instead of walking, cycling or using public transport - if you want less congestion you need LESS car journeys not more!
[quote][p][bold]Monument[/bold] wrote: Great idea and absolutely in the right place. Why would you want to encourage more traffic into an already gridlocked town centre.[/p][/quote]Out of town development simply encourages people to drive to the facility instead of walking, cycling or using public transport - if you want less congestion you need LESS car journeys not more! boliston
  • Score: -2

7:02pm Sun 17 Aug 14

Monument says...

Get real

Fact : People will use their own transport in town or out.
Get real Fact : People will use their own transport in town or out. Monument
  • Score: 1

3:09pm Mon 18 Aug 14

ToytownTim says...

boliston wrote:
Monument wrote:
Great idea and absolutely in the right place.

Why would you want to encourage more traffic into an already gridlocked town centre.
Out of town development simply encourages people to drive to the facility instead of walking, cycling or using public transport - if you want less congestion you need LESS car journeys not more!
What nonsense. Only people that live IN town would think to walk or cycle to a pool in town. Most people live OUT of town.
[quote][p][bold]boliston[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]Monument[/bold] wrote: Great idea and absolutely in the right place. Why would you want to encourage more traffic into an already gridlocked town centre.[/p][/quote]Out of town development simply encourages people to drive to the facility instead of walking, cycling or using public transport - if you want less congestion you need LESS car journeys not more![/p][/quote]What nonsense. Only people that live IN town would think to walk or cycle to a pool in town. Most people live OUT of town. ToytownTim
  • Score: 4

4:03pm Mon 18 Aug 14

Somerset_BTGOG says...

Monument wrote:
Great idea and absolutely in the right place. Why would you want to encourage more traffic into an already gridlocked town centre.
The traffic is only a problem in the town due to poor traffic management, but the gridlock has improved slightly as after the last few months less people now come to Taunton. As for the site of the pool, Blackbrook is the wrong place, that’s clear for all to see!

Sometimes you have to think BIG and follow through with a vision that would have improved the town.

A Modern large all sing and dancing Pool at the Firepool site could have put Taunton on the map, instead we'll have a new small pool at Blackbrook that isn't deep or wide enough.

Why does Taunton always think small and do things wrong?
[quote][p][bold]Monument[/bold] wrote: Great idea and absolutely in the right place. Why would you want to encourage more traffic into an already gridlocked town centre.[/p][/quote]The traffic is only a problem in the town due to poor traffic management, but the gridlock has improved slightly as after the last few months less people now come to Taunton. As for the site of the pool, Blackbrook is the wrong place, that’s clear for all to see! Sometimes you have to think BIG and follow through with a vision that would have improved the town. A Modern large all sing and dancing Pool at the Firepool site could have put Taunton on the map, instead we'll have a new small pool at Blackbrook that isn't deep or wide enough. Why does Taunton always think small and do things wrong? Somerset_BTGOG
  • Score: 2

5:37pm Wed 20 Aug 14

ladybird14 says...

why was all that money wasted on the old pool just to build a new one and i think it would be in the wrong place Firepool would be a much better place but what a waste of MONEY !!!!!
why was all that money wasted on the old pool just to build a new one and i think it would be in the wrong place Firepool would be a much better place but what a waste of MONEY !!!!! ladybird14
  • Score: 2

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