Search

Highbury Leisure Centre: GLL agrees to cough up after neighbours say new extension is eyesore that doesn’t match plans

PUBLISHED: 08:35 13 February 2018 | UPDATED: 08:35 13 February 2018

The ribbon is cut on the new leisure centre. Picture: GLL

The ribbon is cut on the new leisure centre. Picture: GLL

Archant

Neighbours and campaigners say the new Highbury Leisure Centre extension is an eyesore – and doesn’t match the plans that were originally agreed with the council.

The leisure centre ahead of its official opening. Picture: Kamal Sultan The leisure centre ahead of its official opening. Picture: Kamal Sultan

Now GLL, which runs the facility, has agreed to shoulder the cost of “potential solutions” to the problem.

The centre’s multi-million-pound new build was agreed as part of a deal struck with social enterprise GLL.

It was approved on February 1, 2016, and took about 18 months to complete. Mayor of Islington Cllr Una O’Halloran formally opened it this week.

But people who live nearby say the finished building is a mess and blames contractors for cutting corners.

Alan Davison, campaigner and part of the Highbury Pool group, said: “Highbury East councillors helped us come up with a better plan because the original plan looked like an out-of-town Tesco.”

He is particularly unimpressed by the leisure centre’s “appalling” guttering, wrongly coloured windows, and the lack of alignment between metal poles and the building’s brickwork.

He is also unhappy that two air conditioning units have been moved to the more visible east side of the roof.

Alan said: “The residents are very disappointed. They were quite hopeful we were going to finish up with a decent looking building and it’s just not as good as the original plans.

“It is costcutting; it’s classic, classic PFI costcutting. You wouldn’t have had this if the council had built it themselves.”

A GLL spokesman said: “We are pleased to say that work on the main building and its interior is now complete, ready to boost the fitness levels of many more Islington residents.

“We understand some local concern has been expressed about some of the exterior design elements, and this is being taken up with the relevant contractors and the council planning department.”

A council spokesman added: “Improvements to Highbury Leisure Centre are being carried out by GLL and its contractors.

“Some residents have raised concerns about elements of the building’s exterior, which we have investigated and discussed with GLL.

“They have worked on potential solutions, and have agreed to meet with residents again before submitting an application to amend the existing planning consent. GLL has agreed to bear all costs related to this work.

“As with any planning application, residents will be able to give their views before any decision is made.”

0 comments

Welcome , please leave your message below.

Optional - JPG files only
Optional - MP3 files only
Optional - 3GP, AVI, MOV, MPG or WMV files
Comments

Please log in to leave a comment and share your views with other Islington Gazette visitors.

We enable people to post comments with the aim of encouraging open debate.

Only people who register and sign up to our terms and conditions can post comments. These terms and conditions explain our house rules and legal guidelines.

Comments are not edited by Islington Gazette staff prior to publication but may be automatically filtered.

If you have a complaint about a comment please contact us by clicking on the Report This Comment button next to the comment.

Not a member yet?

Register to create your own unique Islington Gazette account for free.

Signing up is free, quick and easy and offers you the chance to add comments, personalise the site with local information picked just for you, and more.

Sign up now

Latest Islington News Stories

12:15

An underground music venue that played host to a who’s who of Noughties indie bands has reopened as a 1920s-themed jazz bar.

08:01

A Canonbury crook who used his stolen moped to do a series of phone thefts across Islington and Hackney was yesterday jailed.

11:13

Islington Chinese Association held a huge New Year bash at its Upper Holloway headquarters on Saturday.

09:36

Holloway Road’s Northern Polytechnic – now London Metropolitan University – had to be evacuated because of an IRA bomb scare.

Yesterday, 18:10

Business chiefs have welcomed the news that the Night Overground service is extending to Canonbury and Highbury and Islington from Friday.

Yesterday, 12:57

A person has died after being hit by a Tube train at Highbury and Islington station this afternoon.

Yesterday, 11:09

Islington Council this afternoon delayed the closure of Sotheby Mews Day Centre by 12 months – giving campaigners hope they can stop the shutdown for good.

Yesterday, 11:04

Anyone who fancies doing their bit for charity can do so by volunteering at the Sue Ryder shop in Essex Road.

PROMOTED CONTENT

“With teenagers there’s a lot of banter, and you can really establish a relationship. You have to trust teenagers to make their own decisions.”

Newsletter Sign Up

Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter

Most read

Show Job Lists

Digital Edition

cover

Enjoy the
Islington Gazette
e-edition today

Subscribe

Education and Training

cover

Read the
Education and Training
e-edition today

Read Now