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Swimming pool closed for repairs in 2019 ‘active’ but awaiting reopening date

18 Apr 2024 3 minute read
Merthyr Tydfil Leisure Centre. Picture from Google Maps

Anthony LewisLocal Democracy Reporter

A swimming pool which has been closed for over four years is now “active” but the date for it to reopen has yet to be confirmed.

The swimming pool at Merthyr Tydfil Leisure Centre has been closed since December 2019 due to water leaks affecting the concrete and causing tiles to lift off.

The deputy chief executive of the council Alyn Owen gave an update on the pool to councillors on Wednesday, April 17, during a discussion on the latest situation with Wellbeing Merthyr (Merthyr Tydfil Leisure Trust) with its contract to run leisure services in Merthyr Tydfil due to end on April 30.

In a response to a question from councillor Paula Layton Mr Owen said that the pool is live now but they haven’t fixed a date.

He said that they’re in negotiation about the management start date and that it is “active” but the detail of the date needs to be confirmed.


A report to full council said the authority was continuing to work with an alternative leisure service provider, who cannot be named due to the contract not yet being entered into, to potentially take over provision of leisure services that fall under the current contract.

Early in 2020, as the building owner, the council commissioned a number of surveys to try to find the root cause of leaks at the pool and what work needed to take place.

Wellbeing Merthyr (Merthyr Tydfil Leisure Trust) – which leases the centre from the council – then told the authority of its plans to redevelop the entire leisure centre including the pools.

The Covid lockdown hampered the work due to a tools and equipment shortage and further structural issues which had not previously been known about were discovered so more investigatory work was required than originally thought.

A redevelopment of the pool was due to be completed in autumn 2023 including a 25m six-lane main pool, a dedicated teaching pool, a leisure pool with interactive water play, and refurbished changing facilities.

In January 2024 the council said it had no choice but to go out to the leisure sector to find an alternative provider to manage the newly-refurbished Merthyr Tydfil Leisure Centre for an interim period.

This exercise resulted in three well-established leisure providers applying for the interim leisure operations contract to manage Merthyr Tydfil Leisure Centre.

Following the Covid-19 pandemic Wellbeing Merthyr spent a year presenting a number of redevelopment options for Merthyr Tydfil Leisure Centre all of which were deemed not adequate for a facility of that size and scope.

The council said this resulted in it deciding to take the lead, securing finance from Welsh Government’s Transforming Towns and Salix funding programmes, as well as commissioning Alliance Leisure to design and manage a fit for purpose redevelopment of the facility.

In February 2024 the swimming pool facility was handed back to the council.

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