Tennis World to stay on current site as new £18m Middlesbrough sports village images unveiled

New artist’s impressions of Middlesbrough £18m sports village have been unveiled :: Tennis World will now remain on its existing site

 

New artist’s impressions of Middlesbrough £18m sports village have been unveiled as the official turf-cutting ceremony takes place today.

But Tennis World will now remain on its existing site.

Nigel Garton, centre manager at Tennis World, said the decision was made following discussions with members.

He said: “We talked to our members and came up with a new idea that we would stay where we are and develop what we have got rather than moving over to the sports village.

“Both the members and the Mayor are on board with it all. They are happy.”

In October 2011, 28-year-old Tennis World was earmarked for closure as part of £10.5m council cuts.

The site is owned the council, but Tennis World leases the site and owns the buildings.

However Tennis World bosses said at in 2011 that they had no plans to close until new facilities were provided.

The council said the decision not include tennis facilities in the new sports village came after talks with Tennis World.

Work on the development at Prissick is now under way.

To mark the occasion former Middlesbrough and England footballer Alan Peacock and the town’s Mayor Ray Mallon are taking part in the official turf-cutting.

They will be joined by schoolchildren who are taking part in a summer football coaching course at Prissick.

The ceremony sees the unveiling of artworks showing how the sports village will look when complete and an accompanying “walk-through” video.

The first phase of the village includes a new athletics track, fitness gym, multi-functional sport and performance spaces and external flood-lit pitches.

A new access road feeding the site from Ladgate Lane and the car park for The James Cook University Hospital is also part of these works.

The existing cycling circuit, clubhouse cabins and skate plaza facilities will be maintained throughout the construction process, as well as access to Tennis World.

The new athletics track and temporary changing will be completed this October, with the new sports hub building, associated external sports facilities and sports car parking opening in April, 2015.

Alan Peacock, born and bred in North Ormesby and who scored 125 goals for Boro between 1954 and 1964, said: “It’s a great honour to be asked to break the ground on what looks to be a fantastic development for the town.

“Middlesbrough has a great tradition of producing great athletes – some of whom we’ve just seen at the Commonwealth Games – and the Sports Village will provide the best facilities to make sure that continues for generations to come.”

Mr Mallon added: “It is fitting that one of the town’s greatest sporting sons should play a part in celebrating the start of work on the new sports village.

Phase 2 of the Sports Village will include an Olympic-size 250m outdoor velodrome developed in partnership with British Cycling.

The plans also include facilities which could be developed as part of Phase 3 - a BMX track and sports pitch, with grandstand facilities.

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