Sunderland sports centres undergo £1.8m facelifts

Steve Dougall (left) the Aquatic Centre general manager with his deputy Richard Selby in the gym which is under-going a re-vamp
Steve Dougall (left) the Aquatic Centre general manager with his deputy Richard Selby in the gym which is under-going a re-vamp
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Sports centres on Wearside are to get a £1.8million facelift.

Sunderland Aquatic and Wellness Centre, in Monkwearmouth, and the Raich Carter Centre, in Hendon, are undergoing revamps after Sunderland City Council signed a management deal for its sports facilities with Everyone Active earlier this year.

Work is well under way at both centres and it’s fantastic to see the improvements already starting to take shape.

Ian Bradgate, Everyone Active’s contract manager for the centres

About £1.3million is being spent on the Aquatic Centre, which will include the reception being repainted, re-floored and getting new doors. Fitness areas will feature new virtual cycling area, a refreshed changing section and equipment and the dance studios will be overhauled.

A cafe pod will also be built. The centre did have one when it first launched, but was cleared to make way for a £100,000 children’s play area, leaving just vending machines for visitors.

About £500,000 will be spent on Raich Carter Sports Centre to improve its fitness area and create a group exercise studio, with more space, a large open-plan gym, with dedicated cardio and a weights area to replace two smaller gyms.

The centre’s changing facilities are also being renovated, with the installation of new shower cubicles, flooring and lockers.

Communal areas on the ground floor will also benefit, with the reception area also being improved and its cafe will be refurbished.  

The final phase of work will include improvements to the pool’s changing facilities.

Work will be completed at the Aquatic Centre at the end of this month and at the Raich Carter Centre by December.

Councillor John Kelly, the council’s cabinet member for public health, wellness and culture, said: “All this helps improve people’s health and wellbeing, make a positive difference to people’s lives, and keeps our city at the top of the league for its first-class facilities.”

Ian Bradgate, Everyone Active’s contract manager for the centres, said: “Work is well under way at both centres and it’s fantastic to see the improvements already starting to take shape.”

Everyone Active took over the management of the centres and six others in June.