Everyone here was deeply upset when the previous Labour council shut down Purley Pool and refused to even apply for Government money to re-open it (money which was given to other leisure centres in Croydon).
I have been actively supporting our new Mayor Jason Perry to get Purley pool re-opened. Challenges include the condition of the current pool being much worse than feared, and the finances of the council being even worse than thought as further historic wrongful accounting (including fabricated forecast revenue) came to light.
Today, we finally have some good news. The ultimate owner of the site, a company called Polaska, is preparing to very shortly to submit a planning application to completely regenerate the site, which will include a brand-new new six-lane swimming pool, training pool, fitness studio and gym, as well as a soft play area for children and a café – all of which they will pay to build.
The plans also include a “later living” housing development (i.e. flats for older people), a new public square, and shops to regenerate the High Street. Residents have also often said that the walkway from Purley Railway Station into the Town Centre can feel unwelcoming, so the plans also include improvements to this route. There will also be public parking spaces.
The proposal is that the construction of the new pool and facilities will be fully funded by the developer (i.e. no cost to taxpayers), and the Council will then run and operate the new leisure centre.
The Mayor will be working closely with Polaska and with the local community to ensure that the details of the project are right for Purley and I have been assured that residents’ views will be carefully listened to. Details of the planed project and various exhibitions and meetings on the project can be found here: https://purleypool.co.uk/ (this web site will apparently be updated by 20th June with the detailed plans, and a survey will go live on 15th June, tomorrow). Polaska is running a public consultation from 19th June to 10th July as a precursor to making the planning application shortly afterwards.
I want to see this new pool delivered as soon as possible. I encourage everyone interested to respond to the consultation with views – and feel free to contact me at any time on this as well. I will also keep everyone updated by email.