Public Information

St Patricks Regeneration Site

Planning phase commences for Council's new leisure centre at St Patrick's Regeneration Site. 

St Patrick’s Regeneration

Proposed Development: New leisure, health and wellbeing centre to include 8-lane pool, learner pool, splash pool, 4 court sports hall, café, gym, spin studios, clip and climb, community hub, soft play area and spa facility.

Access to be provided via Demesne Avenue, with external facilities including outdoor workout area, car parking, dedicated bus parking, cycle stands, landscaping and all associated works.

Location: Lands at the St Patrick's site, approximately 90m to the east of Castle Tower School, 50 Larne Road Link, Ballymena, BT42 3GA.

Have your say

Have your say at the following Pre-Application Community Consultation public drop-in event:

At: Seven Towers Leisure Centre, 74 Trostan Ave, Ballymena, BT43 7BL

Date: Thursday 7 March 2024.

Time: 12noon - 7pm

Members of the project team will be in attendance throughout the drop-in event to answer your questions and hear your comments.

The proposals will remain on public exhibition at the Seven Towers Leisure Centre from Friday 8 March 2024 until Wednesday 10 April 2024 (during the opening hours of the leisure centre).

Feedback questionnaires will be available at the Seven Towers Leisure Centre and online using the Survey Monkey platform.

Comments on the proposals are also welcome by emailing: stpatricksregeneration@midandeastantrim.gov.uk

Alternatively, written submissions can be forwarded by post clearly marked ‘Ballymena Leisure, Health and Wellbeing Centre’ to:

Mid and East Antrim Borough Council
The Braid
1-29 Bridge Street
Ballymena
BT43 5EJ

Comments must be received no later than Wednesday 10 April 2024.

Previous Consultation

The proposed facilities mix for the new leisure, health and wellbeing centre was established through a wide ranging public consultation exercise in 2019.  

The consultation was very positive and garnered a broad spectrum of views from a number of stakeholders, including:

  • Sports clubs and Governing Bodies;
  • Existing users and members;
  • Health & Wellbeing Centre Development Sub Group;
  • Leisure centre staff;
  • Other identified stakeholders, including Disability Sports NI, Sport NI, community and sports organisations and governing bodies who could not attend the scheduled sessions were contacted individually to seek their views.

An online public consultation was made available and a separate online survey was also distributed to local primary schools at that time.

Further consultation sessions were also completed with the Northern Regional College, the Public Health Agency and Council’s Senior Management Team.

A comprehensive community survey, reflecting local demographics and within a 10 minute drive time of the St Patricks Regeneration site and the existing Seven Towers Leisure Centre, was conducted via a Door-to-Door Survey.

Public Consultation panels

View the panels

Introduction

The ambition for the new leisure, health and wellbeing facility is to provide a modern state of the art centre in Ballymena for all members of our community to come and enjoy.

Site Plan

The new Leisure, Health and Wellbeing Centre is located at the St. Patricks Site in Ballymena.

The redevelopment of St Patricks is a significant regeneration plan led by the Department for Communities and being delivered by a number of key stakeholders including Council.

Council have secured circa 4 acres of land at St Patricks for the new Leisure, Health and Wellbeing Centre development.

Within the grounds of the new three storey facility there will be car parking including EV charging points, bus parking, and a drop off area.

Pedestrian access to the building will be via a covered external walkway.

A sensory garden and Clocktower constructed with retained bricks from the demolition works of the Barracks will form a feature paying homage to the former use of the site, and will be located within the grounds of the Leisure, Health and Wellbeing Centre.

An external exercise space will be provided, the need of which has become increasingly in demand since the pandemic, enabling users to enjoy fitness activities outdoors such as yoga and pilates when the weather permits.

Images in the display panel include:

  • Aerial aspect over Demesne Avenue showing Main Entrance and overall context
  • Aerial View of Leisure Centre Project & Community Connections Project
  • Annotated Site plan
  • Aerial aspect over Car Park showing overall context

Ground Floor

As you enter the building at ground floor level you are welcomed into a double height lobby space, greeted with the Reception and Café.

The Café will have space for up to 50 users, with access to seating on an external paved area with elevated views across to the Ecos Nature Park.

Toilet facilities, including disabled provision is located adjacent to the café space.

Throughout the new Leisure, Health and Wellbeing Centre there is a strong focus on the needs of families and children.

Within the new facility there will be a safe and fun Clip ‘n’ Climb space, which will provide an indoor adventure area with various obstacles and walls to climb for children with a range of abilities.

Plus, a Soft Play facility available for children of all ages, with a separate play space for parents and toddlers.

A seated area for parents or guardians to observe will also be provided.

This space will be bookable for private parties for example children’s birthdays, and a multi-purpose space will also be provided that can be set up for fun and games after the time concludes within the soft play area.

A double height four-court Sports Hall is provided, which accommodates:

  • 5 aside
  • Basketball
  • Badminton
  • Netball
  • Pickle Ball
  • Volleyball
  • Indoor Hockey
  • Table Tennis
  • Martial Arts
  • Childrens events - large parties, space for bouncy castle etc
  • Other Events – conferences, trade shows etc

A separate dry change facility for male, female and users with accessibility requirements is located across from the Sports Hall.

Images in the display panel include:

  • Ground Floor Plan
  • Concept View of Soft Play/ Clip ‘n’ Climb - to be developed
  • Aspect from Demesne Avenue over towards Main Entrance
  • Internal experience through Cafe towards the Entrance

First Floor

The main pool is located at first floor level with the accommodation including a 25 metre long, 8 lane pool, with starter blocks and timing system.

A viewing gallery is provided for up to 115 spectators.

The main pool has a moveable floor meaning that the depth can be altered to allow children to also use this facility.

This reduced pool depth will also enable the provision of an aqua challenge course during dedicated pool sessions.

Adjacent to the main pool is an area specifically designed for younger users.

A learner pool will provided to help children gain confidence in the water and learn to swim, this space also has a dedicated viewing area for parents.

Within the designated children’s zone there is a splash pool area introducing fun play elements to the pool experience for children.

It is planned that this space will also contain an aqua play area.

The swimming pool facilities will have unisex village changing, along with a changing places room and dedicated space for buggy storage for parents with young children.

A separate spa area is included with its own male, female, and accessible changing facilities.

The spa comprises of treatment rooms, along with a samarium, rock sauna, herbal steam, and ice room.

A vitality pool has been included which is orientated within the spa to provide views towards Slemish Mountain.

As part of the overall activity provision a spin studio has also been incorporated into the design and will accommodate 30 spin bikes.

A Community Hub is included which will provide a multi-purpose room designed with flexibility in mind.

It will act as a large open area for group activities, but the space can also be sub-divided it into smaller areas for more private needs for example low impact community care or counselling.

Access through the building is served by a central circulation core, with a large glazed rooflight bringing light down through the centre of the building.

Two lifts will also be provided.

Images in the display panel include:

  • First Floor Plan
  • Community Hub looking out toward the Ecos Park and Slemish beyond
  • View overlooking the 25m, 8-Lane Swimming Pool
  • Concept View of a Splash Pool - to be developed
  • Internal aspect of the Spa Area & Vitality Pool

Second floor

A 670 sq m state of the art fitness suite has been designed with separated zones for cardio, functional, strength and resistance.

The fitness suite will include a range of high-quality equipment from bikes, running machines, rowing machines, free weights area, and various exercise stations.

From this space users will benefit from views across the Ecos Nature Park and Slemish Mountain beyond.

Images in the display panel include:

  • Second Floor Plan
  • 3D plan view of second floor area
  • Main circulation
  • Aspect from Fitness Suite, out to the Ecos Park and Slemish Beyond
  • Internal experience of the Pool Hall from the Spectator Seating

Additional Images

Additional images on the display panels include:

  • Concept view of Clip ‘n’ Climb - to be developed
  • View within the Sports Hall
  • Concept view of inflatable pool slides offering - to be developed
  • View across the Pool to Spectator Seating
  • Clear and legiable circulation space connects all the activities of the building
  • View from the junction of New Link Road and Demesne Avenue with aspect of Cafe & Community Hub
  • External Exercise Area set within landscaped approach to the Building
  • Approach along Demesne Avenue

3D rendered fly-through video