Saturday 4th of March will mark the one year anniversary since the official announcement to close down Falmouth’s Leisure Centre, Ships and Castles. The decision was met with disapproval from many, and plans continue to re-open the site one year on.

The site has been shut since March 31st 2022. Photo: Cherilyn Mackrory.

In an emergency meeting held this time last year, the decision to close Ships and Castles Leisure Centre was made by Cornwall Council. Despite a bid from Pendennis Leisure and others, none were deemed “economically viable” to keep the centre running.

The decision to close Falmouth’s only open pool was met with discontent from workers on the site, families who visited the pool, and locals. Particularly frustrated at the decision is swimming teacher and member of Pendennis Leisure, Gemma Lawley. Truthfal spoke to Lawley: “We’ve now got the most populated area in Cornwall with no public swimming pool which is awful and really sad. We’ve got kids who can’t swim, yet we’re surrounded by water.”

There is still hope, however, that the centre will be able to re-open in the near future, with Lawley at the forefront of fundraising work to relaunch the site and pool. “We’ve got really far as a community. Falmouth Town Council will be leasing the site to Pendennis Leisure, and we will be looking to re-open what we can, to get people back up and using the centre as much as possible.”

Listen to Pablo’s story here: