A Cambridge City Council website

Cambridge City Council

Council and democracy

Home > Council and Democracy > Decision details

Decision details

Cambridge and South Cambridgeshire Indoor Sports Facility Strategy

Decision Maker: Executive Councillor for Planning Policy and Infrastructure

Decision status: Recommendations approved

Is Key decision?: No

Is subject to call in?: No


To approve the draft Cambridge and South Cambridgeshire Indoor Sports Facility Strategy for publication.


Matter for Decision

The Officer’s report set out the work which had been undertaken with South Cambridgeshire District Council to develop the Indoor Sports Facility Strategy 2015-2031 which addressed the future provision of indoor sports halls, swimming pools and outdoor cycling facilities to serve existing and new communities in  Cambridge and South Cambridge. The strategy has assessed existing facilities, the future need for sport and active recreation facilities and opportunities for new provision.


Decision of Executive Councillor for Planning Policy and Transport

  i.  Endorsed the Cambridge and South Cambridgeshire Indoor Sports Facility Strategy 2015-2031 (Appendix C) as a material consideration in decision making and as part of the technical evidence base for the Local Plan with immediate effect.

  ii.  Agreed that any minor amendments and editing changes are made in consultation with the Executive Councillor for Planning Policy and Transport the Chair and Spokesperson of Development Plan Scrutiny Sub-Committee.


Reason for the Decision

As set out in the Officer’s report.


Any Alternative Options Considered and Rejected

Not applicable.


Scrutiny Considerations

The Committee received a report from the Planning Policy Manager.


The Committee made the following comments in response to the report:

  i.  Squash did not appear to feature in the documentation and commented that the City had recently lost a publicly accessible squash facility on Histon Road following a planning application.

  ii.  Commented that swimmers liked different facilities not just swimming pools in leisure centres but swimming facilities which were located outside, were not heated and had no roof. Reference was made to Jesus Green swimming pool.

  iii.  Commented that there was no need for a cycle track but there was an aspiration to provide one so this had been included within the strategy.

  iv.  Commented that there appeared to be a balancing act between the provision of sporting facilities which the Council’s evidence base did not support but where there was an aspiration from the Governing Body. 


The Strategic Leisure Consultants, Sports & Recreation Manager and the Planning Policy Manager said the following in response to Members’ questions:

  i.  Squash court provision in the City had been looked at as part of the work. Squash was not like other sports and currently there was a national decline in the popularity of the sport. Squash was popular in the 70s and 80s. There was not a lot of play and pay provision in the City, but centres at Kelsey Kerridge and the North West university site had public courts for hire and currently met all the local demand.

  ii.  With regards to the planning application the site where the squash courts were situated was allocated within the local plan for residential development, therefore the loss of the facility was accepted by the site when it was allocated in the Local Plan.

  iii.  Commented that if proposals came forward for sporting facilities there was a whole host of factors which would be taken into account and which would be balanced against location, green belt and any special circumstances.

  iv.  Commented that Jesus Green swimming pool was not included in the modelling output as it was a seasonal facility, however ideas could be developed going forward to extend the seasons and available facilities. 

  v.  There are proposals for a swimming pool at the North West University site; however whatever size was being delivered would not be enough to fulfil the unmet demand across the districts, as it was not in a location that could provide suitable access for all public demand generated from the growth across the two local authorities.


The Committee unanimously resolved to endorse the recommendations.


The Executive Councillor approved the recommendation.


Conflicts of Interest Declared by the Executive Councillor (and any Dispensations Granted)

No conflicts of interest were declared by the Executive Councillor.


Report author: Bruce Waller

Publication date: 30/08/2016

Date of decision: 02/06/2016

Decided at meeting: 02/06/2016 - Development Plan Scrutiny Sub-Committee

Accompanying Documents: