A councillor has described the Government’s decision not to award funding to a new leisure centre in Lichfield as “devastating”.
The Levelling Up Fund bid had hoped to secure £5million for the new facility at Stychbrook Park.
But Lichfield District Council was not successful in securing the funding, leaving further questions over how a new leisure centre to replace Friary Grange would be paid for.
Cllr Paul Ray, Liberal Democrat member for Chadsmead, said the local authority needed to come up with an alternative funding plan to avoid the project failing to come to fruition.
“The lack of support for our area by the Conservative Government is devastating.
“This project must not fail. We cannot afford to have yet another scheme stalled part way through the process.
“Lichfield residents have made it 100% clear that a leisure centre in the city is a priority. If the Conservatives will only listen to residents, and share their view that a leisure centre is a priority, they will find the money.
“The Conservatives need to implement a coordinated funding strategy for the various projects planned by Lichfield District Council – that has been so clearly lacking.
“They need to be proactive and determined to find this funding. They cannot let our community down.”Cllr Paul Ray, Lichfield District Council
Cllr Ray’s comments come after Labour’s Cllr Dave Robertson also insisted the leisure centre must be build.
“I am gutted that the Conservative Government has chosen not to support our area with funding that would have allowed the council to move ahead with plans for a replacement leisure centre in Lichfield.
“The district council needs to ensure that it keeps the promise to the people of Lichfield and make sure that we do see a replacement for Friary Grange before it closes in 2024.”Cllr Dave Robertson, Lichfield District Council