- The Mayor and Council of the London Borough of Lewisham
- United Kingdom
On 15th July 2009 the Mayor and Cabinet of the London Borough of Lewisham decided to pursue a new option for Forest Hill Pools known as Option 3. This became possible because the Council was able to source £3 million from elsewhere in its budget. They are now publicly committed to building new pools on the Dartmouth Road site, starting straightaway. They are also publicly committed to retaining the frontage block of the old pools building as part of the new building.
The campaign to Keep Swimming in Forest Hill was thus successful on all counts. Thank you very much to everyone who helped us in every way.
Lewisham Council is proposing to move the swimming pools from Dartmouth Road to Willow Way in Sydenham.
We believe that the new swimming pools for Forest Hill should be a high quality design, retaining the frontage block, on the Dartmouth Road site and built in the near future.
The Council is proposing two options to replace Forest Hill Pools. The first is an attractive modern design which places new pools behind the existing frontage block on Dartmouth Road. This design is favoured by local people, but the Mayor claims that it is not affordable and cannot be built before 2015 and maybe not at all. The other option is to move the pools to the industrial estate in Willow Way in Sydenham SE26. This is unpopular with local people, but it is claimed by the Mayor that it could be built soon and more affordably.
What is so good about Dartmouth Road? This site is at the civic heart of Forest Hill and has been the home of swimming for 120 years. It has good transport links and new pools here would give the town centre a lift and help the businesses along Dartmouth Road to thrive again. This plan will reuse the pools frontage block, a familiar local landmark. We believe that this plan can be made affordable if the Council will look at alternative approaches which we can present.
What is wrong with Willow Way? The site is unsuitable and is situated in a narrow side street. Moving the pools away to this site would threaten businesses on Dartmouth Road and tear the heart out of the town centre. The old pools building would be left derelict for the foreseeable future.
We, the undersigned, call on the Mayor of Lewisham to replace the Victorian swimming pools on Dartmouth Road as soon as possible, while retaining the frontage block.
We ask the Council to keep swimming on the present site as this will help revive Forest Hill as a vibrant town centre. A leisure centre hidden on Willow Way will damage the vitality of Forest Hill.
The Keep Swimming in Forest Hill petition to The Mayor and Council of the London Borough of Lewisham was written by David Willows and is in the category City & Town Planning at GoPetition.