Flume is a big hit with youngsters

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Life is a slippery slope for delighted youngsters in Hawick, after the reopening of the Teviotdale Leisure Centre’s new flume last Friday.

Closed due to its age and operational costs in 2008, the flume’s return is the first phase of a £263,000 redevelopment project at the Mansfield Road centre.

In the week it has been open, it has found both new young fans who have never tried it out, as well as others who remember the adrenaline rush of the ride and can’t wait to get on it again.

Due to high demand, the first two sessions on Friday were pre-booked, and it was 11-year- old Rhys Elliott who was lucky enough to be the first of a long line of users to test out the water slide.

He said: “It was really exciting and a great experience.

“I would like to see more of this kind of thing in Hawick, hopefully it’s something that can be built on.”

Rhys’s mum Kerry also tried out the flume.

“It was really good fun and it’s great to have something that can be used by most age groups,” she added.

Hawick High School pupil and swimming club member Jamie Diver, who is 15, said: “I can remember using it when I was younger, but it is still class.”

Scott Weir, Live Borders leisure facilities area manager, said: “I’m absolutely over the moon that we have been able to deliver the opening of the flume today.

“Seeing the first person coming down there was quite a special moment.

“It has been a long and a very thorough process on the part of Live Borders.

“We have had a large team working on it and the guys who have come in and undertook all the work for us have been fantastic.

“Today has been a great moment for everyone involved and for me personally.

“This facility is unique to the South of Scotland and we want the TLC to become a hub for both the people of the Borders and tourists alike.”

The reopening was praised by members of the town’s community council on Monday evening.

Chairman Ian Turnbull said: “Hawick Community Council has pushed hard for this reopening for the last two years. It’s really paid off, and the kids, and some adults, are really enjoying the return of the flume.

“It’s a real boost for the town.”

Members also praised Live Borders for committing to the re-opening and welcomed the retention of the names of those who helped fund the flume’s original construction featured on the stairs up to the start.

● Plans to upgrade the facility’s café are also progressing, with work having started on Monday.

This area will reopen on Monday, January 15, and in the meantime refreshments will be available from various machines around the reception area.

The next redevelopment phase is also under way with initial works started on a new exercise studio. Other works planned to be completed in spring include the creation of a significantly larger and improved soft play area and a new reception area.

For more details on flume sessions and swimming timetables contact the TLC on 01450 374440 or pop in and ask a member of the team.