Winchester Sport and Leisure Park

Leisure Centre CGI cafe view
Winchster Sport & Leisure Park CGI artist's impression - cafe view

River Park Leisure Centre is now more than 40 years old and its capacity to meet the needs of a growing population in Winchester is limited. The Council has looked at various options for replacing or refurbishing it and has decided that the preferred option, if it remains affordable and deliverable, is to build a new Leisure Centre at Bar End.

A new Leisure Centre at this location will cost in the region of £38 million.   The Council has worked with architects to produce concept designs for the Centre and we will be looking to submit a Planning Application in Summer 2018. We hope to start construction in 2019, with completion in 2021.  The Council is working with a number of partners to deliver the new Leisure Centre including the University of Winchester, the Pinder Trust and Hampshire County Council.

The facility mix for the Leisure Centre includes a 50m swimming pool, a separate teaching pool with movable floor, an eight court sport hall, four squash courts, 200 gym stations, two large studios and one spin studio.  There will also be a hydrotherapy suite and eight treatment rooms along with a clip and climb facility.

You can get up to date with all of the latest news by reading our project update broadsheet (pdf, 2.4mb). However, if you would like any further information then please email your enquiry to

Winchester Sport and Leisure Park details

Portfolio Holder

Cllr Lisa Griffiths and Cllr Guy Ashton

Start Date


Key Steps/Milestones

  • Approval of outline business case - January 2018
  • Building contractor selected - Summer 2018
  • Start procurement process for Leisure Centre operator - Summer 2018
  • Prepare and seek planning permission, with accompanying public exhibition - Summer 2018
  • Approval of full business case - Early 2019
  • Start on site - 2019
  • Completion - 2021


Latest Status

Working with architects, the Council have now developed an overall vision for the Sport and Leisure Park at Bar End, along with concept designs for the new Leisure Centre.  The designs are now being further developed and we are aiming to start the planning permission process later this year.

A process is underway to select a contractor to build the new Leisure Centre and we are starting to consider the procurement process for the operator of the Centre.

The next meeting of the Cabinet (Leisure Centre) Committee will be held on Wednesday 23 May 2018.  Links to any reports that will be discussed at that meeting will be published when the reports become available.




The next phase of engagement will be held in conjunction with the submission of a Planning Application later in 2018.

Last Committee Report

Cabinet (Leisure Centre) Committee on 26 March 2018

Next Steps

Planning permission will be sought and a formal full business case will be prepared that assesses the crucial issue of funding alongside elements such as land ownership, transport and commissioning building designs.