Kingston's Kingfisher Leisure Centre will likely be replaced to make way for an entirely new facility, Kingston Council (RBK) have announced.

The leisure centre has been closed since December last year for "urgent repairs" that subsequently revealed deeper structural problems.

News on its condition and reopening has been largely absent for months, stoking the frustration of residents in the borough with whom the centre was popular.

On Wednesday (October 21) however, RBK announced its ambition for the "comprehensive redevelopment of the site" that it said could "create a much enhanced leisure facility along with significant improvements to the public realm."

In a statement published Wednesday, a spokesperson for the council revealed that during its extended closure, severe structural problems with the Kingfisher centre's roof were uncovered that would cost millions of pounds to repair.

They went on to say that the council leadership favoured an entirely new construction than repair the existing centre:

"The Kingfisher Leisure Centre was closed at the end of last year after the discovery of structural problems in the roof of the building. Extensive survey work was needed to establish the extent of the problem not just with the roof but with the building as a whole.

"This was initially delayed because of the pandemic but has now been completed and has shown that the roof requires complete replacement and that the overall condition of the building is poor.

"These repairs would cost more than £5 million and would take 18 months to complete.

"Instead, the administration wants to invest in the borough’s future and provide a facility fit for the 21st century.

"The council will therefore be making a recommendation to the Response and Recovery Committee next week for the comprehensive redevelopment of the site to create a much enhanced leisure facility along with significant improvements to the public realm," a spokesperson said.

Councillor Caroline Kerr, Leader of Kingston Council, added her thoughts, saying that the council were committed to having a swimming pool at the site:

"We know how important the Kingfisher Leisure Centre is to everyone who uses it and we are 100 per cent committed to having a pool on this site.

"We initially planned to fix the roof but when we found out how much it would cost and how long it would take, we thought again," she said.

"Unfortunately, the current building is coming to the end of its natural life and we didn’t want to spend £5 million only to discover new problems further down the line.

"We would prefer to invest in a high quality, sustainable leisure centre and swimming pool which looks to the future.

"We hope this exciting new development will attract more people to Kingston and give the town a welcome boost," Cllr Kerr added.