A ground breaking ceremony has marked a key milestone as work starts onsite at Egham's new £19m leisure centre.
The Mayor, alongside representatives from the Runnymede Regeneration Programme, has set the first spade into the ground.
Works have started on the site of what will be Egham's new state-of-the-art leisure centre.
The £19m leisure centre is being built next to the existing centre on Vicarage Road. Hoardings have been put up around the site, while construction works focus on clearing the ground ready for the foundations to be laid. Works on the foundations will continue into the New Year.
The building will be a lightweight steel construction and will begin to take shape later this year.
Due for completion in early 2019, the new leisure facility will include a 25m, eight lane swimming pool with a moveable floor and spectator seating, and a 10mx10m learner pool with splash area. The centre will also boast a four court multi-use sports hall, a 110-station fitness suite and four flexible studios and indoor cycling studio. A two-storey health spa will house a sauna, steam room, a relaxation area, and a range of wet and dry treatment rooms. A café will sit alongside the crèche and double height children's adventure play area.
The area outside the new centre will be landscaped and developed for enhanced community use to complement the existing 3G five-a-side football pitches. A full-size synthetic turf pitch suitable for year-round sports will be added at a later date.
The existing leisure centre will remain operational during works to allow people to continue to use the facilities.
Paul Turrell, Chief Executive of Runnymede Borough Council said,
"Breaking ground on the new leisure centre for the borough is a major milestone in this project. When completed it will deliver on the Council's commitment to provide a public swimming pool for the borough and include a wide range of other modern health, fitness and leisure facilities. For as long as I have been Chief Executive, residents have told me how important it is to have a good quality leisure centre with a swimming pool. Well now we are about to deliver on this exciting project. It will be the first of some major new developments for Egham, providing a town fit for 21st century living."
Rick Lawrence, Partnerships Director at Places for People said,
"Works are progressing well onsite and the community will quickly see the leisure centre take shape as the steel framework starts to be constructed later this year. Once complete, the new state-of-the-art centre will give the community the very best health and fitness facilities. Alongside Runnymede Borough Council, our aim is to create something that the people of Egham will be proud of."
Hazel Aitken, Chief Executive of Achieve Lifestyle said,
"The new facility will provide local residents and businesses a fantastic venue to learn to swim or just to relax, especially with the addition of the pools and spa facilities. The centre has been designed with the future in mind, and will be able to shape and adapt to the needs of community changes as demand and trends evolve. Achieve Lifestyle are very much looking forward to being a key partner in the successful delivery of this great venue."
The leisure centre is one of several phases of the Runnymede Regeneration Programme - Runnymede Borough Council's £200m investment and redevelopment programme. The programme is being delivered by development and placemaking specialist Places for People. Egham leisure centre will continue to be managed by Achieve Lifestyle, the Council's leisure operator.
The Runnymede Regeneration Programme will see several sites redeveloped across the borough over the next eight to 13 years.