We took a risk over leisure centre opening, admits council

The Queen's Diamond Jubilee Centre
The Queen's Diamond Jubilee Centre

Problems at Rugby’s new £12 million leisure centre will be sorted out, according to bosses at the Town Hall.

It was revealed this week that there were 11th-hour talks at Rugby Borough Council about delaying the opening the day before the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee Centre was due to open on August 31.

The highly-anticipated project had already been put back by a month due to delays with the building work.

Speaking to the Advertiser this week. Ian Davis, executive director at the council, said: “The original plan was that staff would be on site for three weeks before opening.

“There were delays with the contractors. We met on the Friday evening before it was due to open on Saturday.

“We thought ‘shall we open or put it off?’.

“We didn’t want to put it off because people were looking forward to it and we knew people would want to use it.

“We took the risk to open it and took a chance.

“There is nothing significantly wrong with that building at all.

“There is a snagging list that they are working through but they are minor things.”

Complaints received by the Advertiser have included long queues, high prices, poor design and cold changing rooms at the centre, run by management company Better.

This week Advertiser reader Samantha Carney said: “The swimming lessons there are an absolute disgrace to any centre. They are completely unmanaged, unco-ordinated and lots of parents queue week in week out to find out why their complaints haven’t been answered.”

Rugby Borough Council said the number of people using the centre had been far greater than it was expecting.

It maintains that the overall feedback has been positive.

Mr Davis added: “People need to look at the longer view of it.

“This leisure centre will be a facility that will be around for the next 40 years.

“It will be sorted and it is being sorted.”