Winchester Leisure Centre - Bar End Option Local Business Consultation

Closed 14 Dec 2015

Opened 26 Nov 2015

Results expected 13 Jan 2016

Feedback updated 1 Feb 2016

We asked

We asked businesses around Bar End for your views on issues of concern and opportunities, if a new leisure center was to be built at Bar End.

You said

4 responses were received online. 

The facilities that ranked high in terms of ‘best serving the local community’ were function rooms for hire and a café.

The highest ranking improvement was pedestrian access and secondly cycle routes.

The issues of concern that ranked high were parking and traffic.

We did

This consultation is part of an ongoing process to agree the future for our leisure facilities, and we wanted to understand the view of local people living and working in the Bar End area to bring forward ideas and deal with potential issues at an early stage of the development of this preferred option. A summary of the survey responses, comments from consultation events and responses from potential partners has been discussed by our project team and provided to the architects to inform concept designs. 

In response to key concerns raised in relation to providing enough parking on site and traffic impact on the local road network a full transport assessment (TA) has been commissioned. This is a piece of work that would normally be done at the planning application stage of the process, however doing it at this early stage  will ensure that the Council’s decision making can take into account these sorts of issues and possible solutions.

The concept designs being worked on now will be made available later this year. The City Council’s Cabinet will be provided with an update in March and in November the full council will be asked to make a decision on the preferred option of a new leisure centre at Bar End or the fall back option of refurbishing the existing leisure centre.


The existing leisure centre in Winchester is over 40 years old and the cost of maintaining the centre will increase significantly over coming years. In addition, the question arises as to whether the existing leisure centre can continue to meet the needs of a growing population, alongside the already high participation levels in sport in our district. In September 2015 Cabinet decided on a preferred option of building a new leisure centre at Bar End with the refurbishment of the existing Leisure Centre as a second option.

It should be stressed that until those detailed proposals have been assessed the Council has not made a firm commitment to build a new leisure centre.  This is a major financial decision and it must be financially sustainable. Partnership funding will also need to be secured.

The second option being considered is a substantial refurbishment of the existing building, but this will not fundamentally change the facilities available.

The area of land we are looking at for the potential leisure centre at Bar End is to the east of the sports stadium. If the play park area is built on a replacement play park will be provided as part of the scheme.

The Bar End Depot side will be reused. The Leader of the Council has stated that realising a full commercial value from the site is not part of the financial planning for the new leisure centre.

Why your views matter

Following some extensive consultation in 2013/14 we are now embarking on a local phase of this work. This will be followed by a wider public consultation early in 2016. These two elements of consultation, alongside ongoing conversations with partners and key stakeholders will further inform a detailed financial appraisal of the project.

If the decision to progress the preferred option of a new leisure centre at Bar End is taken, key stakeholders will be involved in the development of detailed plans and further consultation will take place as part of the planning process.





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