The fightback has begun against plans to close Falmouth's only leisure centre with call for a public pool to be built in the town.

An action group 'Falmouth Needs A Public Swimming Pool' has been set up on Facebook by Labour town councillor Jude Robinson.

Cllr Robinson has accused Cornwall Council of 'fobbing' people off and 'asset-stripping' Falmouth after it announced a consultation on the future of the Ships and Castles Leisure Centre in the town.

"This is about Falmouth people and what Falmouth people want," she said. "When I read the statement from Cornwall Council that basically said we can travel to Helston or Carn Brea there are lots of private pools around I just saw the red mist descend.

"I know what Falmouth people are like, they are brilliant, but it is also about Penryn, Budock, Mawnan all the places around that being fobbed of with 'Oh there are lots of pools in hotels, oh you can travel 30 minutes'.

"If they think 30 minutes to Carn Brea or Helston and that's fine for everyone. I just think they are just fobbing us off and asset stripping Falmouth."

The company that runs the site, GLL, says it can no longer afford to do so after heavy losses during the pandemic, unless the county council bails them out. A public consultation has been launched with the county council saying unless a solution is found four leisure centres - Saltash, Launceston, Wadebridge and Ships and Castles in Falmouth will close on April 1.


Falmouth's Ships and Castles confirmed at risk - and the date it could close

Cllr Robinson says the first task is to get an extension of the proposed closure date of April 1 and hopes to hold a public meeting in a couple of weeks time to discuss options.

"In an ideal world we'd have a proper pool on a site that is acceptable to local people. I think there's a lot of work to be done on what's possible and what isn't. Cornwall Council need to help people achieve that rather than just thinking 'Oh this is an opportunity for us to get some money.'

"I think they're talking about selling off the land using the proceeds paying for their priorities. Well, what about Falmouth's priorities? We just get this taken away and they take the money. If they think that is acceptable they must be on some other planet.

"The land is Falmouth's. It belongs to Cornwall Council only because of local government reorganisation - like the Princess Pavilion, in which the residents of Falmouth have also had to pay for Cornwall Council's mishandling.

"If Cornwall Council think they can close the centre, sell off the land and spend the money on their priorities instead of Falmouth's, they need to know they will have a fight on their hands from local people."

Cornwall Council have been asked for a comment.

You can find the public consultation here


Here's how to have your say over the future of Cornwall's leisure centres

You can find the Facebook page here