Coral Reef closure could lose council £500,000By Jennie Slevin
March 04, 2013
The council could lose close to half a million pounds following the prolonged closure of Coral Reef.
Maintenance work at the popular swimming pools has gone on for three months longer than expected after structural issues were discovered in the roof.
But bosses claim despite the short term pain of the closures the much-needed works will ensure years of fun for youngsters at the waterworld in Nine Mile Ride, Bracknell.
The pools, which hold swimming lessons and children’s birthday parties, are due to reopen on Saturday, March 23.
A spokeswoman for Bracknell Forest Council, which runs the attraction, said: “Coral Reef has had to extend its usual annual maintenance period to allow modifications to be made to the unique vaulted wooden roof structure which spans the pool hall facilities.
“The structure is very complex and part of the normal maintenance regime which happens every year and includes comprehensive assessment and testing of the roof.
“Structural surveyors advised there appeared to be some movement in the trusses supporting the roof that should be corrected.
“The council took the decision to immediately commission repair works to strengthen the roof and the design, manufacture and installation requirements has required the pool to remain closed.”
The council estimates it will spend £90,000 on the repairs which will be funded from the existing maintenance budget for 2012/13.
The spokeswoman added: “The repairs fall into two parts.
“The current work will fit galvanised steel collars around the main supporting trusses, and tie rods will fully stabilise the roof structure.
“To take full advantage of these major repairs to extend the life of the roof structure even further, similar galvanised steel collars will be fitted to other parts of the roof in November this year, although it should be stressed these joints are not giving cause for concern.
“These repairs are a permanent and long term solution and will ensure Coral Reef can provide fun and excitement to children of all ages for many years to come.”
The leisure centre, which is also home to Sauna World and a gym, is now open and only the pools will remain closed.
Councillor Iain McCracken executive member for culture, corporate services and public protection said: “We’re very optimistic about getting the pools open soon.
"We have a lot to offer in Bracknell so if people are still looking for water facilities I would encourage them to visit Bracknell Leisure Centre in Bagshot Road or Harmans Water Primary School in Wellington Drive.”
For more information about alternative leisure centres phone (01344) 454 203 or visit www.bracknell-forest.gov.uk.