Demolition has begun on the site of the new Woolwich Leisure Centre, as public feedback following consultation into the scheme is revealed.

The existing Wilko store, on General Gordon Square, is being knocked down to make way for the council-funded project.

The latest consultation found that a 25-metre swimming pool and café are among the top facilities welcomed by residents, as locals called for a public housing requirement among the 450-500 new homes to be built.

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Cllr Sarah Merrill, Cabinet Member for Regeneration and Growth, said: “The Council is making a big investment in Woolwich across a number of regeneration projects that will rejuvenate the town centre, create jobs, attract visitors and boost the local economy.

“Alongside our successful bids for the Future High Street Fund and Heritage Action Zone, it represents our commitment town centre regeneration that benefits local people and businesses.”

Plans also include new shops, restaurants, and the refurbishment of the Tramshed arts centre.

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There were 438 responses to the consultation that ran from December 2020 to January 2021.

Two bed homes were the preferred size in the residential part of the scheme.

In response to other questions, people gave their views on things such as the retention of the Bull Tavern, the inclusion of cafes and restaurants, and the preferred location on the site for taller buildings.

The next stage of the project is to develop the designs taking into account the public's feedback.

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The demolition works also include the strip-out of the old Tramshed building as part of a major refurbishment and extension of the theatre and arts centre there, also funded by the council.

The demolition is being carried-out by Morgan Sindall Construction who the Council has appointed as the main contractor for the leisure centre.

The Council expects the new leisure centre to be complete and ready for use by winter 2024.

It will replace the old facilities at the Waterfront Leisure Centre with their modern equivalents and will also provide new facilities not currently available at the existing building.