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Powys County Council has decided to do a U-turn on its decision to close some of its leisure facilities between January and March.
The council says it has received better than expected news on the amount of money it will be getting from the Welsh Government in the next financial year.
A council spokesman said that they have listened to the views of members of the public and councillors.
The spokesman said: “The decision was made to try and address the additional financial challenges faced by Freedom Leisure [which operates the facilities] in light of the significant increase in energy cost which are compounded by the decision to remove public sector organisations from the UK-wide Energy Support Scheme from March 2023.
“On Wednesday we received information about the funding that will be provided to the county by Welsh Government next year. The settlement is better than anticipated. In light of this, we have decided not to implement the decision made by cabinet on December 13 to temporarily close three leisure centres and three swimming pools between January and March 2023.”
The decision will mean pressure on the council’s budget this year but it can use the money next year to plug the gaps.
But it is carrying out a review before deciding to spend any significant sums of money on centres that are in need of investment.
The council spokesman added: “Many of the leisure facilities across the county are in need of investment due to their age and condition. Before we spend any significant capital funds, we will undertake a comprehensive review of the facilities and we will fully engage with local communities, those who use our services and county councillors, as well as by working closely with Freedom Leisure.
“There is some urgency to undertake this review to make sure that our leisure services are sustainable in the future, particularly since we expect significant cuts in public expenditure from 2025 onwards.”
By David Tooley
Senior reporter at the Shropshire Star, focusing on the south of the county. Got a story? Get in touch at [email protected]