This year, the Wigan Life Centre will be open for business.
And what business! Two swimming pools, a gym, a dance studio with sprung floor, libraries, not to mention offices for local public services and a one-stop-shop for advice and information, right in the heart of town.
It will mark the culmination of nearly a decade of hard work by the council and its partners to bring the dream of revitalising Wigan’s civic heart, using hard-won private finance funding and delivering the kind of joined up services people now demand.
Cllr Chris Ready, who leads on customer care issues in the council’s cabinet, has been on site several times during construction.
“It’s really coming together now,” he said, “Residents are in for a treat with a facility to be proud of, offering state of the art recreational facilities as well as accessible public services.”
The new pool under construction
There are two parts to the site – either side of Wigan town hall, the pool, gym and offices are at the bottom of the hill and the library at the top.
Cllr Ready was impressed by the facilities for less abled customers. There are large toilet rooms, with fully adjustable sinks for the most severely disabled pool users, as well as dedicated changing facilities for families, for school children and others.
“Local Life Centres – in Leigh, Marsh Green, Atherton, Platt Bridge and Ince – are proving popular and very successful,” added Cllr Ready.
“And with the Wigan Life Centre just months away from completion, the public will have access to one of the most ambitious council projects ever undertaken in the UK, delivering services they need and facilities they want.”
Building projects in Leigh continue apace in the wake the massive Leigh Sports Village, hotel and college complex, with work beginning on the much anticipated cinema, shopping and restaurant site in the centre of town this spring.