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Swimming pool plan for Millom moves a step closer to reality
AMBITIOUS plans linked to a new multi-million pound health hub for Millom can be revealed in more
detail for the first time today.
A swimming pool, sports courts, fitness studios and upgraded artificial pitch are all proposed in
documents prepared for the government.
The plans form a part of the Activating Community Health project, one of four schemes being
developed under the Millom Town Deal.
Working alongside Copeland Borough Council, the Millom Town Deal Board secured an offer of £20.6
million in July 2021 for projects it identified as local priorities.
Mike Starkie, the Mayor of Copeland has welcomed progress with the project. He said: “We know that
residents of Millom are hugely supportive of a new swimming pool and leisure hub for the town and
everybody linked to this process has been working incredibly hard to move the vision forward.
“The details we can share today are incredibly exciting, but there is still a lot of work ahead of us.
Balancing the funding equation for such a significant investment is a challenging task; we must ensure
that the health hub is a viable long term prospect that will serve and be of benefit to the people of
Millom for many years to come.
“The business case prepared for this project is now undergoing a thorough review ahead of
submission to the government in the summer.”
As part of the project development process, several scenarios were explored. After careful
assessment of the benefits and challenges of each, a preferred option was identified.
● A community 15m, four-lane swimming pool
● Upgraded 3G surface to the all-weather pitch at Millom School
● A four-court multipurpose sports hall
● Studios for group exercise, classes and dance
● A fitness suite
● A café
The most viable location for the new health hub has been identified as land on the Millom School site,
with the new facility working in tandem with the improved all-weather pitch.
It is anticipated that the new leisure hub would be open to the community all year round, including
during term time, attracting in the region of 260,000 visits every year. It would also ensure almost 300
school children would have direct access to the facilities, enabling swimming lessons to be delivered
without the need to travel to other towns with pool facilities.
The Activating Community Health project aims to improve the health and wellbeing of local residents,
promote social inclusion, increase employability, attract visitors, improve resident and investor
perceptions of the town, and help retain and attract young people and families
Robert Morris-Eyton, Chair of the Millom Town Deal Board, said: “The Activating Community Health
project represents a wonderful opportunity for Millom and its surrounding villages.
“Diversifying the sports and recreation offer in our town will create more jobs - encouraging more
people to visit and spend time in Millom, strengthening the local economy.
“The Health Hub project plan has been assembled against the backdrop of challenging economic
circumstances, with increased costs of building materials and services at the forefront of our minds.
“We very carefully considered various options as part of the project development process, and believe
we have a robust plan that gives us the best possible chance of delivering a sustainable health hub
with a swimming pool for Millom.”
Two schemes closely aligned to the Activating Community Health project have already been delivered
using money from the Town Deal Accelerator Fund.
An upgrade of children's play areas at both Millom and Haverigg Parks has been completed, while the
Millom Community Track was opened in 2021 to promote more walking, running and cycling in the
Activating Community Health is one of four projects that form the Millom Town Deal. The other three
The Iron Line – A proposal to transform the unique coastal lagoon into an inspiring visitor attraction
which fuses ecology, heritage and art within an inclusive recreational space around the sea wall.
Reactivating Heritage Buildings – A proposal to significantly enhance Millom Town Centre by bringing
derelict, vacant and underused heritage buildings back into active use to increase vitality and footfall.
Connected Millom and Haverigg – Improving Millom’s transport network to create a gateway to the
town at the railway station, while transforming cycling and walking infrastructure in both Millom and
The Millom Town Deal projects have now reached the assurance stage which means the plans are
undergoing final assessment before being submitted to the government later this year.
Further details for each of the projects will be made available after the assurance stage is complete
when people will be able to comment on the proposals.
For more information on the Millom Town Deal, visit millomtowndeal.org.uk
On July 27, 2019, the Prime Minister announced that the Towns Fund would support an initial 101
places across England to develop Town Deal proposals, to drive economic regeneration and deliver
long-term economic and productivity growth. See further details of the announcement: PM speech at
Manchester Science and Industry Museum - GOV.UK (www.gov.uk)
A Town Deal is an agreement in principle between government, the Lead Council and the Town Deal
Board. It will set out a vision and strategy for the town, and what each party agrees to do to achieve
this vision. See the 101 places being supported to develop Town Deals: list-of-100-places.pdf
Each of the 101 towns selected to work towards a Town Deal also received accelerated funding last
year for investment in capital projects that would have an immediate impact and help places “build
back better” in the wake of Covid-19. View a list of accelerated funding by place: towns-fundaccelerated-funding-grants.pdf (publishing.service.gov.uk)
This release was prepared by 32West on behalf of Copeland Borough Council and the Millom Towns