Two leisure facilities facing closure unless £329k repairs carried out

Eyemouth Swimming Pool.Eyemouth Swimming Pool.
Eyemouth Swimming Pool.
Senior councillors asked to endorse cash bid.

Two leisure facilities in the Borders face closure within weeks unless urgent repairs amounting to £329k are carried out, it has emerged.

Councillors will next week be asked to approve the funding to carry out urgent repairs at Eyemouth Swimming Pool and Gytes Leisure Centre in Peebles.

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Gytes needs an investment of £131k to replace its boilers which are said to be “beyond economic repair”.

Gytes Leisure Centre.Gytes Leisure Centre.
Gytes Leisure Centre.

The back-up boiler system has recently been condemned following its scheduled safety inspection.

Currently, therefore, the centre is without heating or hot water.

Closure of the centre would be “a huge significant detriment to club sport in the town” as Peebles Rugby Club use it for changing and Peebles Rovers are planning to share the pitch there.

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Meanwhile, works are required to the air handling system which regulates the temperature in the pool hall at the Eyemouth pool.

A report calling for the use of emergency powers to endorse the financial outlay will be presented to Scottish Borders Council when its members meet on Thursday, August 31.

A report to the committee, from Suzy Douglas, SBC’s director, Finance and Procurement, says: “Of the two boilers at the Gytes, it has recently been confirmed that Boiler 1 has been out of operation for approximately 18 months and the recent gas safety test undertaken on Boiler 2 declared it as immediately dangerous.

“Neither of the Gytes boilers, therefore, remain currently operational. The Gytes centre remains open but there is no hot water or heating. If a solution is not in place by October 2023, the centre will have to close because there will be no heating.

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“This means the centre will not be available as a public venue nor as a changing venue for Peebles Rugby Club. Peebles Rovers are also in active discussion about sharing the pitch at the Gytes and a failure to keep the centre operational would potentially impact adversely upon both the rugby and football clubs to the significant detriment to club sport in the town. The lead in times for replacing the boilers is estimated at four to six weeks.

“Eyemouth pool is served by 2x air handling units. Both are in excess of 25 years old. Revenue was spent during 2022 to maintain and prolong life of the units but both have now failed and are not repairable. The facility remains open with workarounds but this is not a long-term solution and failure to approve permanent works for Eyemouth will result in the inevitable closure of the facility from October 2023, because there will be no heating.”

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