Allander centre survey: why are we waiting?

THE results of a major survey into the public’s views on the future of Allander Leisure centre will not be released for another six weeks.

Concerns have been expressed that East Dunbartonshire Council should have published the results before now, as it has already been seven weeks since all the data was collected. The month long consultation process finished at the end of March.

The centre in Bearsden could be replaced by a new one if the council agree to sell the land to housing developers Cala Homes.

However Cala will only stump up around £10m towards the estimated £17m needed for a new comparable centre after they sell new houses on the Allander site. This is unacceptable to objectors from Kilmardinny Westpark Action Group.

Newly elected Milngavie MSP Gil Paterson, who conducted his own questionnaire at Christmas, said: “There was the expectation that the council could do this quicker than us.

“The public are due an answer to the questions that they have been asked.”

A total of 1,416 of Mr Paterson’s questionnaires were completed and 98 percent said no to closure, even temporary, and the same percentages said the existing centre should be retained until another one was built.

Thomas Glen, head of the council’s development and enterprise service, said: “The council commissioned an independent comprehensive consultation exercise during March and April of this year on the future provision of leisure services in Milngavie and Bearsden.

“The consultation included questionnaires which were available throughout the area and online, exit interviews with customers at the leisure centre and focus groups with customers and members of local representative groups.

“Over 1,700 responses were received and these are currently being analysed by the independent consultants who undertook the consultation, and a report will be submitted to the next council meeting on June 30 and thereafter posted on the council’s website.

“The results will be presented to councillors at a seminar to be arranged prior to the council meeting.”