Families in Merton have been making a splash in a brand new state of the art leisure centre.
The first visitors to Morden Leisure Centre were welcomed by the Leader of Merton Council, Councillor Stephen Alambritis on 6th November.
The brand new building, situated in the beautiful landscape of Morden Park, has a 25m x 13m main pool and slightly smaller second pool with a moveable floor, which will be used for a range of activities from shallow toddler sessions to diving. There is a studio / community room for classes and activities, a fully-equipped 100 station fitness suite, with state of the art equipment and a café with outside seating to serve dog walkers who use the popular park.
The leisure centre is fully accessible with a lift to both floors and accessible toilets and showers throughout. The Poolpod is available for access in and out of the pools as well as a specialist ‘Changing Places’ room which includes toilet, shower, changing bed and hoist, for those that need it.
Mark O’Connor, from Morden, was the first person to take a dip in the new pool after winning a silent auction to take the first swim. Proceeds from the auction are being donated to the Mayor’s charities, Colour House Theatre and Friends In St Helier.
The council has built the new centre to replace the ageing Morden Park Pools, which was energy-inefficient and expensive to maintain. The project was launched with two principles in mind; maximum benefit from limited budget and making sure that every stage was informed by the needs of users and residents.
The centre will be managed by Greenwich Leisure Limited (GLL), the company which currently operates Morden Park Pools, Canons Leisure Centre in Mitcham and Wimbledon Leisure Centre on behalf of the council.
Tuesday 6th November also saw Morden Park Pools close its doors to the public for the last time. Work to demolish it will soon begin and the land will be restored to open space. Work to landscape the area and plant trees will begin once the demolition is complete.
Cabinet member for community and culture, Councillor Nick Draper said: “Today we are opening this fantastic new leisure centre which offers something for everyone, whether you want to improve your health and fitness or enjoy a family day out.
“The leisure centre has been designed around the needs and wishes of the community. During the last year it has been incredible to watch the plans turn into a state of the art building with outstanding facilities and wonderful views across London.”
GLL Managing Director, Mark Sesnan said: “We are delighted to continue our successful partnership with Merton Council, as we open the new Morden Leisure Centre. Welcoming both new and existing customers through the doors of this new facility will be a very proud and exciting moment for centre staff.
“GLL is a charitable leisure social enterprise celebrating its 25th year in 2018. We exist to deliver affordable, inclusive leisure facilities which improve the health and wellbeing of the communities we serve. Morden Leisure Centre will compliment this vision and deliver outstanding leisure provision to the residents of Merton.”