Council leader says Listing makes reopening Oasis harder

By Barrie Hudson - 11 May 2022

Community

Swindon Borough Council leader David Renard has spoken about the latest fortunes of Swindon's troubled Oasis Leisure Centre.

His comments came after campaign group the Save Oasis Swindon Steering Group said owner SevenCapital had been unable to say when, if ever, the centre would reopen.

It has been closed since late 2020, when operator GLL surrendered its lease and said the centre was unviable.

Last year the swimming pool and its iconic dome were Grade II Listed, a move which was praised by the Save Oasis Swindon Steering Group.

Cllr Renard said: “We recognise the challenges SevenCapital face in reopening the Oasis.

“Clearly the listing of the building has made that process much more difficult as SevenCapital has to ensure certain parts are maintained and protected - that also comes at huge additional cost. 

"It will also take time to find a solution and the building needs to be made sustainable to ensure an operator can be secured for the Oasis’s long-term future.

“I would like to assure everyone we are fully committed to working with SevenCapital so the difficulties in reopening the building can be overcome.”

A spokesperson for the steering group had said after hearing from SevenCapital: "SOSSG is shocked and disappointed that SevenCapital has today stated that despite Seven Capital having spent 'many hundreds of thousands of pounds thus far' in searching for a solution that complies with Listing requirements, that the scheme is unviable for SevenCapital.

"Furthermore, SevenCapital went further to say that it was unable to say whether or not [the Oasis] will reopen.

"Seven Capital also stated that it hopes that a solution will be found but that SOSSG should not get its hopes up prematurely."

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