Majority support £650k K2 revamp but Labour slate ‘flawed’ consultation
Changes at K2 Crawley sports centre involving a £650,000 investment but the loss of indoor bowling are supported by a majority of users, according to a consultation.
More than two-thirds of the 887 respondents support proposals for an expanded gymnastics hall and space to host high profile musicians and comedians.
But a Labour councillor said the consultation was flawed with weighted questions.
However, Cllr Lenny Walker (Con, Maidenbower), cabinet member for leisure and culture, said: “To build on K2 Crawley’s success we have to review usage and customer demand and look for ways to improve the centre.
“It has become clear that better uses could be made of this area, improving participation levels in response to increased interest following the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games while raising the profile of the town as an entertainment venue.”
The changes would reduce the cost of running K2 by £60,000 per year, the council said.
A new three-tier soft play area and two extra rooms suitable for children’s parties are part of the plans. The indoor bowls area will be removed because it has the lowest usage of all sports on offer, the council said.
K2’s gymnastics club has a waiting list of more than 1,000 children and young people - with about 400 of these standing to benefit by expanding facilities.
Just over half (53 per cent) of paper and online respondants agreed with increasing gymnastics and removing bowls; while under half (39 per cent) agreed to each proposal.
Bowlers rejected the suggestion of short-mat bowls at K2 or going to Gratton’s Indoor Bolwing Club and users were anxious about losing the physical and social benefits of bowling.
At least 400 regular bowlers will be negatively affected, a meeting of Crawley Bowls Development Group heard.
Chris Mullins, (Lab, Gossops Green), said: “Fundamentally the whole consultation process was flawed. If the Tories at the council continue to push this idea a whole generation of older people in Crawley will lose a facility which is very important to them.”
Cllr Mullins has called a public meeting to discuss the issue with council leader Bob Lanzer due to attend.
It will be held at the Civi Hall on Tuesday (Febuary 5) at 7pm.
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Friday 24 May 2013
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