CAMPAIGNERS vying to ensure Bromsgrove residents have a sports hall on the same site as the new Sports and Leisure Centre took to the High Street on Saturday to raise further awareness of the issue.
Save Our Sports Hall was first formed when the district council took its initial decision not to incorporate the current sports hall or build a new one as part of the new centre development.
Members said they feared it would spell the end for some valuable community groups which met at the Dolphin Centre and affect the livelihoods of businesses which depended on sports hall provision.
The plan was for North Bromsgrove High School’s hall to be used to accommodate as many sessions as possible but the authority decided not to go ahead with a deal because the school’s need to hold exams in there would have meant it could not be used for 12 weeks of the year.
It is now looking at all the options, which could include refurbishing the current sports hall or building a new one.
Save Our Sports Hall campaigner Louise Humphries vowed the group would continue to keep the pressure on the council to ensure a sports hall was provided on the site.
“We had amazing support from the people Bromsgrove, much better than we ever expected.
“At times there were people queuing to sign the petition.
“Today really showed Bromsgrove needs and wants a sports hall.”
Coun Michael Thompson, who has also lobbied on the issue with fellow councillor Chris Bloore, said: “The reason the school’s sports hall can no longer form part of the solution to demolishing the town’s sports hall, the committee was told, was because of changes to GCSE exams.
“If these reforms are the reason for this u-turn, one must question why it has only been realised now.”
He added he used his place on the Audit, Standards and Governance Committee two years ago to request that the social and financial risk of demolishing the sports hall be considered fully by the council but that was not done.
He said it was sad that it had taken this long for the council to consider the plea and those of the Save Our Sports Hall campaign.