Kick-off: Work begins to transform sports centre

Contractors look at the plans

Contractors look at the plans

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Work has begun to transform Bridlington Sports Centre into the home of boxing and junior football in the town.

Local contractors will be at the forefront of the development, which will see the rundown building given a new lease of life by Bridlington Club For Young People.

Project manager Ryan Melles

Project manager Ryan Melles

A new £600,000 artificial 3G pitch is taking shape and the four squash courts will soon be knocked into a new gym in stage one of the overhaul.

Ryan Melles, who owns The Property Shop Yorkshire in Quay Road, is project manager.

He said: “I have boxed since I was 10 and grew up with the Club for Young People chairman Andy Potts.

“I still go down to the club to help out and Andy asked if I’d like to get involved, because of my property business.

The sports centre in Gypsey Road

The sports centre in Gypsey Road

“I have helped to decide which contractors to use and the club wanted to keep everything as local as possible, so there is a feeling of ownership.”

The principal contractor is Tom Hart of Bridlington-based Springvale Homes and local plumers, surveyors and electricians have been chosen to work on the project.

Stage one will see Bridlington’s first 3G pitch installed, which will be fenced off, floodlit and have acoustic screens around it, to keep the noise down for the neighbours.

“It will be the best anywhere around here,” he promised.

Work has begun on the new 3G pitch

Work has begun on the new 3G pitch

While that is going on outside, there is plenty being done inside.

“We are working like mad to convert the changing rooms off reception to FA standards,” said Melles.

“For the boxing gym, we are knocking the squash courts into one big area and putting a new heating system in.”

All of that will be done by March before stage two sees cosmetic upgrades to the fascias, soffits, doors and windows, as well as new windows and signage.

The centre will be the home of the successful Bridlington boxing club, hosting some of their shows, and will also be the base for all Burlington Jackdaws and Bridlington Rangers junior football teams.

“We want this to be more than a club,” said Melles. “We want to be a community organisation.

“We are hoping other sports clubs and community- based projects and clubs can hire out or have a base at the centre.

“We are working very closely with The Hinge Centre on the Havenfield Estate to share services and support for that community.”

The centre was formerly owned by East Riding of Yorkshire Council, but when its new £25m seafront leisure centre opened in May, the sports centre was surplus to its requirements.

The CYP’s long-term ideas include turning the former aerobics studio at the back of the building into a refreshments bar with a veranda and hiring out upstairs rooms for meetings and offices.

“We would love to see the volume of people using the centre increase,” said Melles.

“There are lots of ideas for things we can do without competing with the other clubs and venues in the town.

“The centre will predominantly be the home of competitive boxing and football, but will have facilities for hire such as a studio, function rooms and offices.

“We want the centre to be a hub for the community used by all people in and around Bridlington.”

The CYP is currently based at a centre inThorpe Street.