Talks begin over plans to turn Scunthorpe sports complex into a housing site

By Scunthorpe Telegraph | Posted: 4 Jan 2018

Talks have started over redeveloping a Scunthorpe sports complex which has stood idle since 2005 as a new housing complex.

The discussions between the site owners at North Lincolnshire Council and the Scunthorpe-based housing association Ongo Homes centre on the Rowland Road sports complex.

Last year the local authority put the one-and-half-acre site up for sale for £525,000.

The complex adjoining a children’s recreation park comprises a bowling green, a pitch and putt course and two tennis courts.

But the facilities have not been used since 2005 due to the rising cost of vandalism. In 2007, it was estimated it would cost more than £86,000 a year to keep the facilities open.

Martin Phillips, the development manager for Ongo Homes,said: “It is one of the schemes included in the programme that is being delivered between Ongo and North Lincolnshire Council.

“It hasn’t actually been purchased yet. We will be preparing proposals for the site following further internal briefing and public consultation; so not going in for planning for a few months yet."

The news will come as a set-back to a group of local residents, led by steelworker Pete Johns, who started an unsuccessful campaign to restore the sports complex to its former glory.

The Rowland Road sports complex site in Scunthorpe. (Image: David Haber)

The campaigners, calling themselves the Rowland Road Sports Association, had plans to reintroduce pitch and putt and bowls and turn the tennis courts into a synthetic pitch for five-a-side football and basketball.

At one time, the nearby Wortley House Hotel was also interested in buying half of the site to build more bedrooms.

The park and the sports facilities were opened in 1929.

Rowland Road is one of seven sites in the Scunthorpe area that have been identified by Ongo and the council to build 240 new homes by 2020.

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