Shropshire Council

Overview

The need for improved swimming provision in Shrewsbury

There has been swimming at the site of The Quarry Swimming and Fitness Centre in Shrewsbury for over 100 years. The layout of the smaller pools is on the footprint of the Victorian baths, and the existing Quarry building was built in the 1960s. As a result of the facility’s age and condition, the centre is costly to keep repairing, is not energy efficient nor cost-effective to run, the site layout is restrictive, and the quality of customer provision and experience isn't as good as it would be for a more modern facility.

Since 2007 Shropshire Council, and previously Shrewsbury and Atcham Borough Council, have been considering options for improving and sustaining swimming provision in Shrewsbury.

On 13 February 2019 Shropshire Council’s cabinet agreed to progress proposals that could see the demolition and rebuilding of the Quarry Pool in Shrewsbury. Cabinet agreed that the existing Quarry site is the most suitable town centre location for swimming provision, and authorised council officers to investigate the potential to develop new swimming provision on the site.

They also agreed a budget of up to £500,000 to undertake the full feasibility assessments, and the preparation of feasibility assessments and concept designs.

Cabinet meeting - 13 February 2019

On 13 February 2019, Shropshire Council’s Cabinet agreed that the existing Quarry site is the most suitable town centre location for swimming provision in Shrewsbury, and authorised council officers to investigate the potential to develop new swimming provision on the site.

They also agreed to undertake a full feasibility study which will be carried out between spring and autumn 2019.

View the Cabinet report and appendices here.

The decision followed a review of different locations for providing swimming-based activities in the town centre, which found that the most suitable town centre location is the existing Quarry site. This review was carried out following an earlier Cabinet agreement (in July 2017) that swimming provision should remain in the town centre.

In determining that the Quarry Pool was the preferred location within the town centre, various sites were evaluated using specific criteria. These included: locality of site and ability of users and staff to physically access the site; land ownership; ability of site to deliver the services identified in the vision; site condition and enhancing the public realm; stimulating economic regeneration; and contributing to long-term social and community regeneration.

See the ‘updates’ page for more information.

Feasibility study – spring to autumn 2019

The feasibility study will ask leisure and health specialists to advise on the exact nature of swimming provision required for the long-term health and wellbeing of the Shrewsbury and wider Shropshire population – and we’ll also get detailed designs drawn up to show how the new facilities might look

The study has a budget of up to £500,000 to enable a full assessment of options to be considered against affordability and funding proposals. The outcomes are expected to establish and identify the following:

  • Deliverability
  • Affordability and sustainability
  • Shortlisted designs
  • Meets the council’s vision and strategy for swimming provision
  • Provides additional social, environmental and economic benefits and supports delivery of the Shrewsbury Big Town Plan
  • Potential for working in partnership with local stakeholders