Timetable to be published in June for Pavilion peninsula leisure redevelopment
The Pavilion peninsula redevelopment is expected to bring a multi-million pound boost to the town’s economy as well as create 250 jobs. Timetable of dates for this major development in Weymouth are expected to be published in June.
The redevelopment was greeted as generally good news – although concerns were raised as to whether the jobs will be low-skilled and seasonal and when the shovels will be put in the ground to start the work.
An economic impact assessment was discussed by councillors at a meeting of the Weymouth and Portland Borough Council management committee.
It was also suggested that provision could be made for the operator of the leisure facility to offer out-of-season discounts for residents.
Cllr Colin Huckle said: “It is great to see 250 full time equivalent jobs within this scheme. One wonders how many of these are likely to be highly skilled.”
Cllr Jeff Cant, leader of the borough council, replied that there will be skilled jobs in construction and engineering for two years on the site.
Cllr Huckle also suggested there could be ‘windows for our local residents to have advantageous entry out of season’.
But strategic director Martin Hamilton said: “We could do this but the more conditions you put on a lease the less financially favourable it will be to the council. We have to accept that any of the operators will be well used to delivering year-round facilities and putting in place pricing structures, offers, etc that encourage use of their facilities all year round.”
Cllr James Farquharson commented that while the report is ‘interesting’ in demonstrating the economic benefits of the scheme, ‘nothing has been started’.
He added: “When are shovels going in the ground?”
Mr Hamilton replied: “The critical report comes in June which is a detailed financial model for the facility. We go from that to planning, and alongside planning, looking for pre-lets.”
Summing up the debate, Cllr Cant said: “This is about making sure we have a facility that will boost the economy and boost jobs. June is critical and we really must have a delivery timetable. It must be as quick as we can get on with it.”