East Cambridgeshire’s new leisure centre The Hive set to open in May - two weeks ahead of schedule

An artist's impression of East Cambridgeshire's new leisure centre The Hive which opens in May.

An artist's impression of East Cambridgeshire's new leisure centre The Hive which opens in May. - Credit: Archant

The Hive, East Cambridgeshire’s new leisure centre, is to open its doors two weeks early - with an official civic opening on May 11.

The leisure centre - funded by East Cambs District Council (EDCD) with the help of a £1.5 million Lottery grant from Sport England - is being built by contractor Pellikaan. It will include an eight-lane 25m swimming pool, a learner pool with moveable floor that’s large enough for two or three teaching groups, a 120-station gym floor, two activity studios and a four-court sports hall. Outside there will be a 3G artificial grass pitch.

The Mayor of Ely, Councillor Richard Hobbs, told ECDC’s community services committee that the centre would be handed over to the council this month and then onto Greenwich Leisure Limited, who will manage it.

Councillor Mark Hugo, service delivery champion, said he could not believe that Ely was going to have such a facility because many bigger places did not have one.

Cllr Hobbs responded saying that a great deal of work had gone into the leisure village and where possible, the work was carried out by local people.

Cllr Allen Alderson also recalled that when a leisure centre was first spoken of, many thought it would be too costly and out of the council’s reach.

In his presentation to the committee, Cllr Hobbs showed images including views of the cardiovascular room, the main swimming pool, the training pool, the two dance studios, the changing rooms in the wet and dry areas, and the plant room.

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One of the photographs was of the sports and leisure management team, who run the Paradise Pool, visiting the building. Having been transferred over to the new leisure centre, they said they were excited at the prospect of working in such a ‘fabulous place’.

The dance studios have been separated into two rooms in order to keep down noise levels and there was an extra room which could be used for meetings and events including seminars.

Cllr Hobbs however said there is a lot of work still to be done to improve the appearance of the groundworks around the exterior of The Hive.

The new district leisure centre will be located at Downham Road, next to the Ely Outdoor Sports Association existing sport facilities.

It opens to the public from May 14.