West Lancashire MP Rosie Cooper challenged the Government’s Sports Minister over the closure of sports facilities in West Lancashire and the impact on participation rates.
MP Rosie put her questions to Culture, Media and Sports Ministers in the Commons on Thursday 20th June 2013 following a recent study showing a decline in participation rates.
MP Rosie took the opportunity to highlight Conservative-run West Lancashire Borough Council’s decision to close and demolish Skelmersdale Sports Centre without replacing the facilities. Rosie also highlighted the Council’s inadequate drainage of sports pitches that have been left unplayable, forcing local youth teams to play outside the area.
The Borough Council have been making deep and swingeing cuts to leisure budgets which has had a serious impact on sports provision.
West Lancashire MP Rosie Cooper speaking after the question to Ministers said:
“A year since the London 2012 Olympics and West Lancashire’s sporting outlook couldn’t be bleaker. Only a month after the Olympics had finished West Lancashire Borough Council announced their Olympic legacy for the region; to close and knock down Skelmersdale Sports Centre.
“It is a disgrace that Conservative-run West Lancashire Borough Council has taken away residents’ access to sport whilst their reserves continue to push into the tens of millions.
“The flame we saw travel through the streets last year has been well and truly extinguished by the Borough Council.
“How can Skelmersdale, the largest town in the area with a population of 40,000 people, be left with no sports centre?
“I don’t believe the Borough Council’s current approach is good enough and I believe the people of West Lancashire deserve better.”
West Lancashire MP Rosie Cooper has previously slammed the Council over their decision to leave West Lancashire’s largest town without a sports centre and without any plans for a new facility.
MP Rosie has also met with disgruntled managers and players at Abbey Lane playing fields, Burscough, who for the past two years have had little opportunity to play fixtures due the Council’s inadequate drainage measures.