WORK has started on a £850,000 makeover at the Mountbatten Leisure Centre.
A state-of-the-art climbing facility, soft play attraction, new cafe, event space and reception renovations have all been promised under the plans.
The site’s refurbishment has been launched by venue operator BH Live, in collaboration with Portsmouth City Council which owns the site.
The partnership is part of a 10-year investment plan into the city’s sport and event venues.
Once built, the centre’s new clip and climb activity centre should attract both adults and children as it offers several different climbing experiences.
Managers of the Mountbatten Centre, by Alexandra Park in Stamshaw, say they want to provide members with a more modern experience through new self-service features.
Multiple kiosks and a mobile app will allow customers to manage their activity.
BH Live’s chief executive Peter Gunn said: ‘Mountbatten Leisure Centre, with its world-class sporting facilities and 50m Olympic-size pool, is already a leading sport, leisure and event destination – but it has the potential to be even better.
‘By enhancing its public areas the venue will become even more accessible and attractive for customers, visitors and event organisers.
Mr Gunn hopes that the centre’s new facilities will interest more families and younger people in the area.
He added: ‘In broadening the activity programme through new attractions, we hope more local residents, including families and young people, will be encouraged to visit and get more active.
‘We will be able to deliver a better experience overall and we believe this is key to continued customer use and satisfaction.’
Portsmouth City Council’s cabinet member for culture, leisure and sport, Cllr Linda Symes said: ‘I’m delighted with the plans to expand the facilities at Mountbatten Leisure Centre.
‘The clip and climb and soft play area will attract more families and that can be their first step to becoming more active and enjoying all the benefits of a healthier lifestyle.
‘The changes will also mean a better experience for existing members with new ways they can manage their bookings and newly refurbished facilities.’
To minimise disruption, the venue has been kept open with plans displayed throughout the site to inform members of the improvements schedule.