New consultation launched into Harvies
Posted on 11 Jun 2019
A DEDICATED consultation exercise that will focus solely on the potential relocation of Harvies swimming pool into the new Ardrossan Campus is set to be launched.
Councillor Joe Cullinane, Leader of North Ayrshire Council, said it was absolutely essential that a more focussed engagement with the community was carried out before any decision could be taken.
At the meeting of the Council’s Cabinet, the Council Leader explained that the pre-engagement exercise on the Ardrossan Campus showed there was support for a new Campus at the North Shore to replace Ardrossan Academy.
The major local issue, he added, was the potential relocation of Harvies swimming pool within a new Campus.
By undertaking further detailed consultation, with fresh information about the condition of Harvies and potential costs, the Council can continue to engage with the Scottish Government on the principles of the Campus to ensure that the school is at the front of the queue when funding is announced.
The extra and focussed consultation on Harvies pool will determine whether the swimming pool element forms part of the new Campus.
Speaking after today’s meeting, Cllr Cullinane said: “The key issue is that we need a new Ardrossan Academy. That is absolutely essential for this and future generations of young people in the Three Towns.
“However, the pool remains a contentious local issue – we recognise that. The public survey, school engagement and Mr Rodger’s petition have combined to present a very mixed view from the pre-engagement process.
“So, in order to get a clear steer from the public on the future provision of swimming in the Three Towns we want to have a stand-alone consultation – this will allow us to progress the Campus proposals and put us in better position to access Scottish Government funding.
“This is real participatory democracy in action – the framework for conducting this consultation will be agreed with stakeholders, including Mr Rodgers, and ultimately local people will decide. We will be ensuring local people have access to information on the pool in order to make that informed decision.”
The consultation exercise into the swimming pool will take place during August to determine a definitive position for consideration at the September meeting of Cabinet.
Subject to a clear indication of Scottish Government funding and completion of the formal business case for a community campus, statutory public consultation will commence in October 2019.
The motion – carried at today’s Cabinet meeting – also states that the principle of a multiple facility community campus at Ardrossan North Shore be further developed as the preferred solution to secure a much-needed long-term replacement for Ardrossan Academy.