Major cash boost for Burnley sports centre

A wakeboarding school is set to be built on Rowley Lake, Burnely, as part of ambitious plans. (s)
A wakeboarding school is set to be built on Rowley Lake, Burnely, as part of ambitious plans. (s)

AMBITIOUS proposals to create an outdoor sports centre in Burnley have been given a major cash boost.

Burnley Council fought off stiff competition to win a National Lottery grant of almost £70,000 towards the cost of establishing a lakeside activity centre at Rowley Lake.

Planning permission for the centre, which will boast wakeboarding and canoeing schools, will now be applied for.

Coun. John Harbour, the council’s Executive member for leisure and culture, said: “This is a significant step towards making our ambitious vision for Brun Valley Forest Park, and particularly the area around Rowley Lake, a reality.

“The aim is to provide a lasting sporting legacy, not only for local people but also to attract visitors from a wide area. The lakeside activity centre will help generate new opportunities in coaching and volunteering while, at the same time, providing exciting new healthy activities that will put Burnley on the outdoor sporting map.”

Burnley was also one of only five venues in the country to secure initial funding to develop a cable-operated wakeboarding system. Rather than being pulled along by a motor boat, wakeboarders would be carried across the lake by an overhead cable.

Mr Paul Foster, the council’s leisure development manager, welcomed the funding, saying: “It will open up new opportunities to help establish and develop news sports clubs in our borough.

“We now have to build on this by exploring other funding avenues to take this exciting project further forward.”