The Peterborough Evening Telegraph - - YOUR TELEGRAPH - By Joel Lamy [email protected]­me­ Twit­ter: @PTJoelLamy

A former sports cen­tre in Peter­bor­ough is set to be con­verted into a ‘care vil­lage’ which will cre­ate 78 new jobs.

Plan­ning per­mis­sion has been granted for the re­de­vel­op­ment of the un­used Wood­lands Sports and Leisure Cen­tre in Splash Lane, Cas­tor.

Un­der the plans sub­mit­ted by Coun­try Court Care, which has its head of­fice in Mil­len­nium House, Dukesmead, Wer­ring­ton, the ex­ist­ing unit will be con­verted into 24 as­sisted liv­ing units with a ‘com­mu­nity hub’ which will in­clude a pub, hair­dress­ing sa­lon and nail spa, cor­ner shop and café.

More­over, a 68 bed­room care home with 12 close care units will be erected on the all­weather pitch.

The long-va­cant sports cen­tre and its grounds has been sub-leased from Nene Park Trust to al­low for it to be re-de­vel­oped.

The trust, though, has re­tained the sports pitches to the west of the main build­ing and is in­tent on bring­ing them back into pub­lic use for the first time since 2015.

Trust chief ex­ec­u­tive Matthew Brad­bury said: “We have been pre­par­ing the pitches in readi­ness for the com­ing year and en­vis­age cricket played on the pitch from Spring 2019 with foot­ball start­ing that au­tumn.”

Dis­cus­sions are on­go­ing with schools, clubs and com­mu­nity groups about us­ing the pitches, with the trust look­ing to speak to more in­ter­ested groups.

The sports cen­tre has been un­used since 2004 when Phoenix Life As­sur­ance shut its city head­quar­ters.

Coun­try Court Care has 29 care homes across the UK.Man­ag­ing di­rec­tor Alykhan Kachra said: “Our high spec­i­fi­ca­tion homes, cou­pled with the great care our team de­liv­ers, pro­vide fam­i­lies and res­i­dents with an ex­cep­tional en­vi­ron­ment.”

An artist’s im­pres­sion of the devel­op­ment

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