The first turf was cut today (Monday 16 December) to mark the official start to the construction of a new swimming pool for the people of Ripon.
It signals the beginning of ground stabilisation and engineering works to create the foundations for the new pool building.
When it opens in 2021, the new six-lane pool will provide state-of-the-art facilities which will be the envy of towns and cities across Yorkshire.
It will offer a 60 per cent increase in water space compared to the ageing Ripon Spa Baths which will close when the new pool is open.
The multi-million-pound project will also involve refurbishing and upgrading the existing Ripon leisure centre building.
There will be a new main entrance and lobby, changing rooms and health suite, two new dance studios, a ‘spin’ studio and a meeting room.
Outside, the car park will be reconfigured and a sheltered cycle rack will be installed.
The construction works mean the temporary closure of the onsite children’s play area and part of the playing fields. A footpath will also be diverted.
Willmott Dixon is leading the construction works.
Councillor Stanley Lumley, cabinet member for culture, tourism and sport, said:
I am so excited that we’ve finally reached this moment.
After what seems like many months of planning and discussion, the work to build the new pool is finally underway.
This is a significant investment and will provide the people of Ripon with state-of-the-art swimming facilities.
Combined with the refurbishment of the leisure centre, this represents a transformation of the sport and leisure offer in this part of the district.