24.1 The Lead Member considered a report by the Chief Operating Officer together with exempt information contained in a later agenda item and written comments from Local Member Councillor Claire Dowling.
24.2 The Lead Member RESOLVED to:
1) Note the findings of the public consultation on the future community leisure provision at Uckfield Leisure Centre that took place between 18 March and 27 May 2023.
2) Approve a 19-year lease extension between East Sussex County Council and Wealden District Council to continue ongoing provision for community use of the leisure facilities, including the swimming pool at Uckfield Leisure Centre whilst retaining Uckfield College curriculum provision.
3) Approve, as an interim measure, a short-term property agreement between East Sussex County Council and Wealden District Council for occupation of the Leisure Centre if the proposed 19-year lease extension is not completed by 17 July 2023, noting the current lease between both parties expires on 16 July 2023.
4) Delegate authority to the Chief Operating Officer to carry out all actions necessary to give effect to the recommendations in the report including but not limited to finalising the terms of the lease.
24.3 East Sussex County Council has been in further discussions with Wealden District Council and the College. Wealden District Council has agreed in principle to a new 19-year lease with East Sussex County Council for a continuation of all services currently provided, subject to approval through Wealden District Council governance processes. The service is to be delivered through their existing leisure partner, Freedom Leisure and will include all wetside and dryside activities. The College curriculum use will be unaffected and there will be no changes to the provision of the 3G pitch.