Demolition day: Bye bye Berners Pool - the £3.3 million 'white elephant' of Grange (From The Westmorland Gazette)
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Demolition day: Bye bye Berners Pool - the £3.3 million 'white elephant' of Grange
CONTRACTORS from Manchester this week began demolishing the failed Berners swimming pool in Grange-over-Sands.
A wrecking ball was taken to the £3.3m ‘white elephant’ yesterday morning, just a decade after it was opened to much fanfare to the public.
“It’s a sad day for the town,” said South Lakeland District Council’s health and wellbeing portfolio holder, Coun Graham Vincent.
“But I also see it as positive because now we can move forward.”
The pool was built in 2003 using a £2.5 million lottery grant from Sport England, contributions from both district and county councils as well as significant private fund-raising and donations from local people.
In 2004, the building’s architect Stephen Hodder, of Hodder Associates, was awarded the Royal Institute of British Architects award for his design.
But the pool was open for just three years before being forced to close and a raft of faults were said to have been identified in the building a year later.
Its demolition was confirmed earlier this year.
The district council’s plans for the land, off Kents Bank Road, includes 45 affordable homes and a medical centre.
A parcel of land is also set to be sold on the open market to raise funds for the redevelopment of the outdoor lido, while a public car park is proposed to serve the lido.
The demolition of the pool, expected to take around three weeks, is being carried out by P.P.O’Connor.
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