Resident’s fears over work on London Colney sports centre scheme

Keith Barrow stands on the field adjacent to Cotlandswick where there are plans to build a new sport

Keith Barrow stands on the field adjacent to Cotlandswick where there are plans to build a new sports ground and car park despite warnings from locals that the ground is unstable - Credit: Archant

Building works that could cause a mountain of problems to his home of eight years have been condemned by a worried resident.

Keith Barrow, 67, lives in Cotlandswick, London Colney, and has expressed many concerns regarding the development of a sports centre next to his house.

Keith is one of many residents who could be affected by council development that is set to replace London Colney’s Adventure World.

The new complex will include a 60 station gym, an exercise studio, a single sports hall, outdoor and indoor children’s play area and nine football pitches.

Noise from an existing football club is something that Keith is happy to put up with but the addition of nine more pitches next door presents a problem.

Keith said: “Noise at the moment is bad enough as it is with the local football club, but it’s OK because they have been there a long time and it’s not all the time.

“These pitches will be in use seven days a week and will be right next to us.”

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Another issue of concern is the risk of sink holes in the field opposite.

Keith said: “When someone came to do work on my house they told me they were very worried about the sink holes said to be in the field.”

With flooding still fresh in people’s minds, there are also concerns that the new tarmac grounds on the field could also pose a risk to the homes nearby.

Keith said: “It was like a mud bath on those fields this year, it always is, but the flooding this year is worse than usual.

“If that happened again and the ground has tarmac, where will the water go? We will be in flood plains!”

The other issue that has arisen is the lack of reinstatement of the children’s play area, which has been removed and not replaced.

Keith was keen to point out that many people had objected to its removal, adding: “But it doesn’t seem to matter what the residents say.”

A new play area is due to be put in place when the construction finishes but another resident, who did not wish to be named, said: “Where are the children supposed to play over their summer holidays?”

A council spokesperson said that there would be time restrictions in place to stop any excess sound reaching the houses.

And she said that all risks of sink holes had been assessed and the main building and car park would be away from areas at risk.

The council would also be constructing an attenuation pond to aid the drainage of water on the site.

The council said that all residents were consulted with the plans for the leisure centre but fewer than 10 objections were received.

The development is expected to be finished by summer 2015.