Supporters of a campaign to reopen the closed Ships and Castles Leisure Centre have been urged to write to everybody they can prior to a crunch meeting on July 20.

Around 50 people gathered at Princess Pavilion on Wednesday (July 6) to get the latest update from Pendennis Leisure about the leisure centre on Pendennis Headland which was closed by Cornwall Council earlier in the year.

Falmouth town councillor Alan Rowe read out a supportive statement from Falmouth Town Council which was well received - those present sympathising with the constraints faced by the town and their duty to protect the town from unaffordable liabilities.

Gemma Adams read out a supportive statement from Cherilyn Mackrory MP confirming her belief that the best option is for Pendennis Leisure to reopen S&C and committing to helping that happen. She also read out statements from head teachers and care service providers describing the impact the closure has already had on children, disabled and older people.

It was agreed that everyone would write to Cherilyn Mackrory and Cornwall councillor Louis Gardner asking for Cornwall Council to make £300k per year Shared Prosperity Funding contribution to reopening Ships & Castles. Cornwall Councillor Barbara Ellenbroek pointing out the failure of the education authority to fulfil its statutory obligation to enable all children to learn to swim and asking her to honour her commitments under UN Article 6 Rights of the Child and Falmouth Town Council and councillors making clear their reasoning why the town should take ownership of Ships and Castles.

The Ships and Castles leisure centre awaits its fate

The Ships and Castles leisure centre awaits its fate

Responding to the meeting Cllr Jude Robinson, chair of Falmouth Town Council's finance and general purposes committee, said it will always work on behalf of the town's residents and people had said they need a public swimming pool and want the Pendennis Headland protected from unwanted development.

"That is what we are trying to do," she said. "If only it were as simple as taking it on and reopening the pool. Even with the brilliant plans and commitment of Pendennis Leisure, it would need at least a million pounds in the next couple of years to get this up and running again.

"We can't ask the people of Falmouth to pay that so we are looking at other ways to make this work. Pendennis Leisure are researching other grants and funding"


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Cornwall Council will make its decision at a special meeting of the cabinet on July 20 - this will officially mean the site is 'surplus to requirements' and can be sold off.

Falmouth Town Council says it has been assured that this decision does not mean devolution of the site is no longer possible and Cornwall Council is aware that it is urgently exploring ways to make this possible.

The council has engaged consultants to look at Pendennis Leisure's business plan and it will consider their report at a meeting on July 18. The council will have to do this in private because it's been given information from Cornwall Council on the costings on the understanding they have to be kept confidential.