Leisure facilities in Lewisham (Supplementary) [1]

Session date: 
November 17, 2004
Question By: 
Darren Johnson
Organisation: 
City Hall Greens
Asked Of: 
The Mayor

Question

Well, residents will be left for at least three years without any leisure facilities in the centre of Lewisham, and it is not practical to suggest that everyone can just go off to the south of Lewisham to go swimming. There is huge concern and huge opposition about this in Lewisham, and it does seem to clearly contradict the policies in your London Plan about the need to ensure local sports facilities. Going for three years without this facility, I think, is unacceptable.

You said before in response to the question about post offices that, where it clearly contradicted the policy in your London Plan, you would campaign against closure. Will you join the campaign against closure of the Lewisham Leisure Centre?

Answer

Answer for Leisure facilities in Lewisham (Supplementary) [1]

Answer for Leisure facilities in Lewisham (Supplementary) [1]

Answered By: 
The Mayor

There is quite a significant difference here. The Post Office is closing facilities for their own profit-driven motives. What you have here is a real dilemma for the people responsible for managing Lewisham, which is they desperately need a new school, otherwise, kids are not going to get an education, and nobody in their right mind would want to close the Ladywell sports centre, given it has only recently been refurbished, but equally, they are now facing a massive demand for education.

I have a lot of sympathy, therefore, with the dilemma that Lewisham find themselves in. This is the consequence of far too much flogging off of public land and public buildings over the years, which now presents them with a really unpalatable choice. I know it would be easy to condemn them, but frankly, I do not have an answer.