£14 million Graves extension to put Sheffield at heart of Olympic legacy

One of the biggest sporting projects to be developed in Sheffield in more than ten years is set to place the city at the heart of the government’s Olympic legacy programme.

Plans are being submitted by Sheffield City Trust (SCT) for a £14 million extension and development project incorporating the new National Centre for Sport and Exercise Medicine (NCSEM) at Graves Tennis and Leisure Centre.

The project forms part of the city’s wider £24 million investment in new sports facilities which will see under-utilised, ageing or high cost venues replaced with new facilities that are better quality, will increase participation and will cost less to operate.

The new two storey extension would be built on the centre’s disused five-a-side football pitches at the back of the Centre, in Norton.

In addition to the NCSEM Headquarters, the new facility, designed by B3 Architects, will have a central atrium, two additional tennis courts, a 25m pool and teaching pool, a regional trampolining and gymnastics facility, gym and fitness studios, 10-lane ten pin bowling and a soft play area.

As one of only three Olympic legacy NCSEM projects in the UK, the site will incorporate consultation and clinical treatment rooms and a physiology assessment area.

The development is supported by Sport England, the Lawn Tennis Association (LTA), British Gymnastics and Sheffield City Council.

Steve Brailey, chief executive of Sheffield City Trust, said:

“This integrated, unique and innovative model at Graves will deliver increased opportunities to improve the health and wellbeing of people in Sheffield but also demonstrate the importance of sport to healthy living.

“With a range of activities for range of ages there will be something for everyone to encourage people to take the first steps into a more active lifestyle.

“At SIV, we’re committed to providing the very best facilities for the local community as well as elite athletes and that’s exactly what the new Graves project will offer.”

Sir Andrew Cash, Chief Executive of Sheffield Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, said:

“One of the reasons why Sheffield was chosen as one of three National Centres for Sports and Exercise Medicine is because the city already has award-winning public health and voluntary sector programmes aimed at engaging ‘at risk’ communities and reducing health in-equalities.

“I am delighted we are using this expertise to create a cultural change which encourages people to view an ‘exercise prescription’ as a fundamental part of their health prevention and treatment. The Graves development will be one of the hubs where we can begin to develop this approach and provide the necessary facilities and support for local people to be able to take control and make a real difference to their own health and wellbeing.”

Councillor Isobel Bowler, Cabinet Member for Culture, Sport and Leisure at Sheffield City Council said:

“The Graves project is a great example of the city maximising external capital funding to renew our sports facilities, make them more sustainable by reducing running costs and lead to more people being active with the health benefits that brings.

“This project will provide superb health and recreational facilities for the whole city, particularly for those living in the south of Sheffield, and will complement the major investment being made in the north at High Green.”

Other partner organisations involved in the scheme include the University of Sheffield, Sheffield Hallam University, NHS Sheffield, Sheffield City Council, Sheffield Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Voluntary Action Sheffield and the English Institute of Sport.

A display showing the details of the scheme will be available to view in the reception of Graves Tennis and Leisure Centre during opening hours from Friday 7 February to Sunday 23 February.

Members of the Design Team will be available at the following times for members of the public to drop in and discuss the scheme:

  • Monday 10 February 3pm – 6pm
  • Wednesday 12 February 12 noon – 2pm
  • Thursday 20 February 6pm – 8pm

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