Cornwall

Fight to keep Camelford leisure centre open

A campaign has begun to save a Cornwall leisure centre from closure.

Staff at Camelford Leisure Centre say council officials have told them their council subsidy will be withdrawn from the end of the year.

Cornwall Council said in a statement that the centre "has been identified as a site which the council may no longer be able to finance and operate".

It said it was trying to keep the centre open by an arrangement with the local secondary school.

Staff 'gutted'

The council, which is trying to save £110m over the next four years, will be discussing the budget on 27 October.

Staff at the leisure centre, which employs nine workers full-time and six part-time staff, said they had been told that they need either to find income for the leisure centre from other sources or find other jobs if it closes.

If it does shut, users will have to travel to Wadebridge, Launceston, Bodmin or Bude.

Lifeguard Ryan Beale said: "We are all a bit gutted.

"Hopefully we can sort it out, it is not set in stone yet, but if the centre closes people will have to travel a lot further."

Members of nearby parish councils said they believed a compromise should be agreed instead of closure.

Councillor John Jugg, who sits on St Teath Parish Council and Cornwall Council, said: "We have to try to persuade them that a better option would be to close it down for a couple of days a week. We would accept that.

"We know we have to do something, but to close it down totally is unfair."

A Facebook page has been created supporting the centre.

Local people are expected to lobby members of the council's cabinet on 27 October.

The council is hoping that an arrangement can be made with Sir James Smith's School to keep the leisure centre open.

It said in a statement: "Staff from the council will now be working with the school and staff from the centre to consider how the facility might operate in the future."

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