COUNCILLORS served up unanimous support this week for a new £2m tennis centre of excellence in Dumfries.
Members of Dumfries and Galloway Council’s planning committee agreed to grant planning permission for the transformation of the current facilities at the King George V Sports Complex.
Construction work is now expected to begin next year on removing the current rundown outside courts and for the site to be redeveloped with three new indoor tennis courts with a fabric roof above.
The development will also comprise a link building with new toilet facilities, a changing area, and an office for coaches, all of which connect the new tennis courts to the existing pavilion.
At Wednesday’s meeting, planning case officer Claire Eckstein explained: “The building itself consists mainly of a fabric constructed roof, which will allow light into the tennis court area below, and that’s up to 10.5m high.
“It will be similar to what The Bridge complex is – the building next to it.”
She added that the current pavilion building will be extended slightly to accommodate the new development.
Dee and Glenkens Councillor Andy McFarlane said: “It seems to me to be a fairly straightforward application that’s obviously an enhancement to what’s already there.”
Nith Councillor David Slater said: “I would pose that this goes ahead because we haven’t had tennis courts for quite some time because of the loss of those in Dock Park.
“There’s only one question I would ask: where it’s being built there are some really large trees there – will any of these be lost?”
The planning officer responded: “There are large trees round about it, but it’s only the small trees immediately adjacent to the current facility which will be lost, or partly affected by the proposal.”
The cost of constructing this regional indoor centre has risen from £1.5m to more than £2m, and it was feared that the costs would put the whole development in jeopardy.
Having already committed £250,000 to the project in February last year, the council agreed to serve up an additional £221,000 to back the plans by Tennis Scotland.