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New Leisure Centre for Amble Links Caravan Park

The new leisure centre at Amble Links Caravan Park not only improves facilities for owners of its holiday homes but is also a focus for Alnwick District Council’s plans to extend the range of leisure facilities available to the local community.

Amble Links is leased to Park Leisure 2000 (Northumberland) Ltd by Alnwick District Council. As part of a long term leasing arrangement, the council made it a condition that when the company built a swimming pool it could be used by the whole community. The new swimming pool building was to be located between and linked to two existing buildings - a small restaurant and a shop.

These buildings were to be sensitively restored to form one interconnected complex. The leisure centre should have roof forms and utilise materials appropriate to the locality. The windows should be to a scale to be in balance with the design as a whole and provide plenty of natural light. Additionally, the ground levels were to be reworked to make the building disabled-user friendly. A number of forms of construction were considered but it soon became clear that a timber framed solution was the most appropriate due to its ability to embrace innovative and sustainable architecture, economy and speed of construction.

Pinelog’s architects responded to this challenge by producing a traditional design which involved the existing buildings being re-roofed and reclad in local materials then the swimming pool blended into them. This would provide one homogeneous facility that would respond to the needs of its users and reflect its surroundings both in character and appearance.

Constructed in timber frame, the new building follows the same roof pitch as the original. It therefore has a high vaulted roof supported by a ribbon of trusses which span the 20m swimming pool, learner pool and reception area. A bright octagonal entrance hall throws itself forward from the building line creating a dramatic contribution to the building’s overall identity.
Special attention has been paid to the need to minimise energy consumption. High levels of insulation, a deep plan design, and the ability of the timber frame to absorb heat in the day and radiate it back at night, has reduced the ongoing energy costs to maintain a comfortable climate within the building.

Pinelog was also able to advise on the amount of space required to accommodate the plant necessary to meet Health Safety requirements for treating water in a commercial swimming pool and for generating dry air to prevent condensation.

Counsellor Sue Bolum Chairman of Alnwick District Council's Executive Committee is delighted with the new facility. “We are thrilled that Amble residents now have the swimming pool they always wanted. I would like to pay tribute to Pinelog, for their hard work and commitment. They have put in tremendous amount of work to construct the pool in such a short space of time- well ahead of schedule.”

Said Miles Dewhurst, Director of Park Leisure 2000: “We are delighted, the leisure centre is very popular and has been a huge success. The perceived value to existing caravan owners and their guests is tremendous and it is certainly encouraging sales to potential owners. Membership from the local community continues to increase and this will contribute to the financial returns.”


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Arundel Jones Associates Ltd
Hill Farm, Linton Hill, Maidstone, Kent ME17 4AL
Tel : 01622 745333

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