Swindon’s Oasis Leisure Centre to close as a result of coronavirus pandemic

The Oasis Leisure Centre in Swindon has announced its closure.

A leisure centre in Swindon has announced its permanent closure as a result of the coronavirus pandemic.

Management at the Oasis Leisure Centre say it is no longer “viable” to run because of the financial impact the pandemic has had.

The decision means the centre - which has a gym and swimming pool - will not reopen once lockdown restrictions lift on 2 December.

Consultation with at least 12 members of staff has now started, though there are hopes they can be redeployed to other centres.

The impact of the coronavirus pandemic has led charitable social enterprise & leisure operator GLL and landlord Seven Capital to review the future of the Oasis Leisure Centre. This review has concluded that the continued operation of the Centre is not viable. Both parties are therefore finalising an agreement that will see GLL surrender its lease back to Seven Capital.

GLL spokesperson

“The decision will mean that the Oasis Leisure Centre will not reopen on 3 December when lockdown restrictions are lifted," the spokesperson added.

“Staff consultation has begun, with GLL looking to redeploy colleagues - where possible - at alternative facilities.”

The leisure centre - which first opened in 1976 - is the well-documented inspiration for one of the UK’s biggest bands - Oasis.

The leisure centre was the inspiration for the naming of Oasis (pictured, left to right: brothers Liam and Noel Gallagher). Credit: PA

Frontman Liam Gallagher was reportedly taken with the name after seeing it on a poster in April 1991.

At the time, Noel was working as a roadie for Inspiral Carpets and they were playing a gig in the Wiltshire town.

Noel was initially not too keen on the name but eventually came around to the idea and they decided to give it a go when they returned to Manchester.

Oasis went on to sell more than 25 million albums under their new name but, sadly, never played a gig at the venue which inspired it.

Inside the Oasis Leisure Centre.

Robert Buckland, who is the MP for South Swindon, described the centre as a "much-loved local amenity".

“The Oasis is a very important local amenity for us all here in Swindon," he said.

"I have already spoken to the owners of the site, Severn Capital and urged them to work closely with Swindon Borough Council to find a way forward that will allow the Oasis to reopen and for improvements to be made to a much loved local amenity.

“I will carry on working to try and achieve a positive outcome for all of us who know and love the Oasis.”


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