Cash shortfall puts brakes on leisure centre

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Plans for a new £11.5 million leisure centre in Belper have been put on ice.

A planning application for the proposed centre, off Field Lane was submitted in January last year.

However, since then Amber Valley Borough Council has been unable to make any significant headway on the project.

Now, a spokesman has confirmed that the development is officially on hold until capital becomes available.

The News reported that the council had paid £1.136 million to buy land designated for the centre in December 2011.

However, 12 months later the authority unveiled a £1.5 million package of cutbacks following reductions in Government spending. At the end of the last financial year the council had unused capital receipts of £3 million available for future investment in capital projects within the borough. Of those receipts £2.5 million was earmarked for financing future major capital projects.

A possible new leisure centre was not a popular choice for many people in Belper when the plans were initially revealed, with concerns expressed over the size of the site, loss of parking and a possible increase in traffic.