A yearlong project to replace Mountbatten Leisure Centre’s roof and carry out essential maintenance and repairs to its plant equipment is set to begin this winter, funded by Portsmouth City Council.

The repair to the Mountbatten Leisure Centre roof and plant was agreed in Portsmouth City Council’s 2023/4 capital budget, as one of four key investments. The others being for power upgrade at the port, city centre north regeneration and transport and street environment improvements, including active travel. Other spending in the council’s 2023/4 budget saw investment in schools, additional spending in Children’s Social Care and Adult Social Care, doubling the tree canopy across the city, the provision of grants to families on low incomes to help with the Cost-of-Living Crisis, and investment in the seafront.

The project will be carried out by specialist contractors in phases to minimise disruption on public health and wellbeing services. The first phase of work begins in November 2023 when the sports hall will be temporarily closed until Summer 2024 while overhead works are carried out.

The rest of the leisure centre, including the car park, gym, swimming pools, classes and café will all be open and running as usual. However, it is planned that activities usually taking place in the sports hall will be relocated to other areas of the centre and at neighbouring locations where possible. PAYG sessions for sports including badminton, basketball, baton-twirling and table tennis will also be available at Wimbledon Park Sports Centre and Charter Community Sports Centre.

Mountbatten Leisure Centre is managed by registered charity BH Live, in partnership with Portsmouth City Council.

Leader of the Council with responsibility for leisure, Cllr Steve Pitt, said, “The original section of Mountbatten Centre’s roof was built in the 1980s and the plant equipment and structure are no longer sustainable, so it’s vital to carry out these works for the centre to continue to operate.

“We’re providing the funding for the works at Mountbatten Centre because we’re committed to provide this much-needed health and wellbeing facility for our residents, in line with our vision for people to live healthy, happy lives.”

Customers are being advised of the temporary sports hall closure and how it may affect them. Alternative pools, gyms and classes are also available for customers to use as part of their multisite BH Live Active membership or on a pay as go you basis at other local centres. These include Pyramids and Charter Community Sports Centre. Facilities vary at each centre.

See bhliveactive.org.uk for more information and ask in centre if any assistance is needed.