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'People power' urged in bid to keep Wrexham leisure centre

Published date: 18 December 2013 |
Published by: Garth Ap Thomas and Jonathan Grieve
Read more articles by Garth Ap Thomas and Jonathan Grieve


 

PROTESTERS fighting proposals to close Plas Madoc Leisure Centre are calling on people power to help them with their fight.

The plan to close the centre has sparked outrage among many, with about 2,500 people joining a Facebook page entitled ‘Save Plas Madoc Leisure Centre’.

One of the regular users of the centre is Alison Roberts, of Trevor, who wants as many members of the public as possible to contact politicians as part of the campaign to retain the leisure facility.

“I would like them to get in touch with councillors, AMs and MPs to highlight how important the leisure centre is,” said Mrs Roberts.

“It is used by so many people, is excellent for fitness and very popular.”

Mrs Roberts asked: “There are lots of residents who just wouldn’t travel into Wrexham, so what would we be left with if the closure in Plas Madoc went ahead?”

She criticised Wrexham Council for the way it was handling the closure plans.

“I think the public are not being given sufficient opportunity to put their views forward and alternative points of view haven’t been getting proper consideration.”

Mrs Roberts organised a meeting at Air Products Sports and Social Club in Acrefair last night to discuss objections to the council’s proposal to close the centre.

She urged people to lobby politicians across the region to raise awareness of the issue and see if they would be willing to lend their support.

But she was realistic and said it was time for some of the facilities at the centre to be closed. “I do accept the facility may be at the end of its useful life."

"We need to understand the cost break-down of the centre."

She added: “I have seen the P&L [profits and loss spread sheet] for the leisure centre and I can see it is a very bleak picture.

“Wrexham has more choice. There are a number of council facilities and private gyms. I don’t know where else Plas Madoc users could go. Plas Madoc users will not travel because our local area is here and we will not go the eight miles to Wrexham.”

Wrexham Council says the proposal to close the Plas Madoc facility follows a review of the 11 sports and leisure facilities operated by the authority in the light of proposed budget cuts of nearly £14 million for 2014-15.

A statement says: “To help the council understand the impact of the proposed closure service users, individuals and groups are all asked to share their views via the consultation.

“Hard copy questionnaires can be completed up to and including Monday, December 23. The online version will be available until December 31 at: http://www.wrexham.gov.uk/english/consultation/plas_madoc/index.htm.

“Hard copies of the questionnaires are available at local Leisure and Activity Centres, Contact Centre, Lord Street, Wrexham, Ruabon and Cefn Library, the Opportunities Centre in Plas Madoc and Plas Madoc Housing Office.

“Alternatively you can email your views to plasmadoc.leisure
centre@wrexham.gov.uk

“When the consultation closes all the responses will be collated and will be taken into account by members of the council before they make their final decision.”

For more news from across the region visit newsnorthwales.co.uk

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