Arundel and South Downs MP Nick Herbert was shown plans for a new soft play centre in Henfield when he visited the village’s Leisure Centre on Friday, December 12.
Mr Herbert met Simon Thompson, Manager of the Centre, Eric Holder, Chairman, and Martin Tooth, Treasurer, and was shown details of their major £350,000 project.
Funding for the new building has come from a loan and grant money. In September Horsham District Council members unanimously agreed to supply a loan of £300,000 to the Centre. The project was also awarded £50,000 by the Planning Obligations Panel.
The soft play centre plans have been developed to enhance the existing Leisure Centre and will provide an ongoing means of revenue to support its running costs.
Henfield Leisure Centre is a registered charity and has become a hub for many sport and leisure activities, but it relies on fundraising to keep the building and facilities up-to-date.
The planned extension will house a bespoke multi-tiered activity area for children, with slides, climbing areas, scramble nets, a ball pit, and obstacles. It will provide a place for children to play in a secure environment.
The MP was told the new soft play centre will provide a much needed local facility for parents and carers who currently travel out of the village to use similar centres at Burgess Hill and Brighton.
Other parts of the leisure centre will be reconfigured to create two new entrances, a disabled access lift, and a new cafe. Building work will begin in April next year and be complete within twelve months. The plans are on display in the reception area of the leisure centre.
Nick Herbert said: “I fully support Henfield Leisure Centre’s initiative. The soft play extension will add value to the existing facilities and provide the Centre with an income so that it can continue to be a hub for health and leisure.
“I look forward to returning when the building work is complete.”