Whitcliffe Mount demolition gets go-ahead

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Kirklees Council has decided to knock down a leisure centre – months before the original deadline for demolition.

At a Cabinet meeting the council approved plans to flatten Whitcliffe by the end of May 2016.

Originally the deadline for demolition was the end of 2016.

But plans for rebuilding of the neighbouring school now involve knocking down the centre within 16 months.

Minutes from the cabinet meeting held on Tuesday say: “Approval (has been) given to the closure of Whitcliffe Mount Sports Centre at the end of May 2016 on a date to be agreed with the Education Funding Agency as part of the contract for the demolition of the site and its replacement with a new build school and stand-alone sports hall.”

“That authority be delegated to the Assistant Director (Communities and Leisure) and the Assistant Director (Physical Resources and Procurement) to agree the final closure date with the Education Funding Agency.”

The building originally had to close due to sharing its power and boiler supply with the neighbouring school, which will be rebuilt next year.

The decision by the council to knock down the leisure centre early hints at possible plans to rebuild it.

Council minutes state plans are to build a new standalone sports hall alongside the school, although it is not certain whether this would be open to the public.

Last week, Coun John Lawson (Lib Dem, Cleckheaton) suggested a new-build sports centre on the site could cost as little as £2m.