A new ‘mega adventure’ soft play area is planned for a leisure centre that was devastated by flooding last year - but its ice rink will not return.

Sobell Lesiure Centre in Tollington Road, Islington, suffered extensive damage from flooding after a water main burst in nearby Hornsey Road last August.

Since then, the whole of the ground floor of the centre has been condemned due to damage.

This forced the closure of the trampoline park, soft play, ice rink, squash courts, and sports hall.

Plans have now been unveiled by Islington Council to “upgrade” the damaged facilities, including creating a new café area and installing a ‘mega adventure’ soft play space.

But under current proposals, the ice rink at the leisure centre will not be rebuilt, as the council says not enough people used the venue before the flood - leading to annual losses of £250,000.

Cllr Nurullah Turan, Islington’s executive member for health and social care, acknowledged that some local people would find the decision not to rebuild the rink as “disappointing”.

He added: “After much thought and careful consideration, we’ve taken the difficult decision to propose that we don’t rebuild it after it was condemned in last year’s flood.

“Even before the devastating impact of the cost-of-living crisis and the rise in energy prices, it had been making a loss of £250,000 per year, and the new Olympic-sized rink at Lee Valley would only lead to its usage falling further.”

Islington Gazette: Parts of Sobell Lesiure Centre were condemned after flooding last yearParts of Sobell Lesiure Centre were condemned after flooding last year (Image: PA Media)

The council added that before the flood, the rink served a relatively low number of people – approximately 475 on average per week, compared to 2,000 people per week at the trampoline park.

The trampoline park is expected to be restored as well as the squash courts, while the boxing area will be moved into a larger space.

Full details of the proposals can now be found on the council’s website.

Islington Council, along with operator GLL, which runs Sobell Lesiure Centre on the authority’s behalf, is set to launch a consultation about the new plans on May 26.

It is expected to last six-weeks and Cllr Turan urged residents to give their “ideas, insight and thoughts”.

A spokesperson for GLL said: “Our staff were heartbroken to see the extensive damage caused by the Sobell flood.  While we worked quickly to re-open the upstairs – the ground floor offer was destroyed. 

“As a charitable social enterprise which exists to improve physical and mental health in local communities, we believe there is now an opportunity to increase customer visits, activity levels and improve the visitor experience.  We welcome all feedback on the consultation.” 

The decision to hold a public consultation on the future of the Sobell Leisure Centre is subject to approval by the council’s executive on May 18.