Councillor Sean Marshall, who represents the Annandale South ward, put forward a motion at last week’s area committee to develop a leisure centre in the east of the region in recognition of local successes.
He noted that established clubs in Annan, Eastriggs, Langholm, Lochmaben and Moffat are unable to meet current demands and all have long waiting lists, and suggested that one of Dumfries and Galloway Council’s surplus buildings could be converted into a dedicated gymnastics base.
Councillor Marshall, who received support from Annandale East and Eskdale members Archie Dryburgh and Craig Peacock, said: “There is a popularity in the east of the region, particularly in Annandale and Eskdale, for gymnastics but due to the lack of a dedicated facility some parents are thinking of travelling out the region to help their children develop.
“It’s ironic that while we are the envy of the rest of Scotland in terms of gymnastics success, we are the poor relation in terms of facilities.”
He added: “I feel that while we are giving youngsters lots of opportunities we can’t develop their full potential at the moment.
“If we develop a facility there would be the opportunity to run more classes, allowing more children to progress.”
However, Annandale North councillor Stephen Thompson questioned the suitability of this area for such a facility and insinuated it may be more appropriate elsewhere in the region.
And he also raised an amendment at the meeting that the council’s community and customer services committee would have to provide evidence to support any move.
He said: “I think there’s a demand for a certain type of facility and the need has been expressed from Annandale and Eskdale, but what we are asking for is a regional resource.
“I would prefer it to be in Annandale and Eskdale but it could be that the current success could move elsewhere in the region.”