Sports equipment from Forfar’s controversial Lochside leisure centre is still lying unused inside the boarded-up building more than two years after its closure.
As the future of the demolition-earmarked facility remains at the centre of a Court of Session wrangle, council chiefs have admitted not all of the centre’s old kit has gone to a new home.
The authority came under fire from locals when images from inside the centre revealed equipment, including five-a-side goals and basketball stands, piled up in a corner of the main hall in the building.
The centre closed in February 2017 to coincide with the opening of the town’s community campus.
The photographs were taken during a tour of the building after two local businessmen made separate pleas to prevent the bulldozers moving in, including a £30,000 offer from one of the parties to buy the building.
Some Lochside equipment has been re-purposed by the council’s Active Schools or transferred to the new community campus, with schools in Monifieth, Kirriemuir and Montrose also benefiting
Kit from from Brechin Sports Centre which was not moved up to the town’s new campus or re-purposed by Active Schools has also been snapped up.
However, a number of items still remain in the Forfar centre.
An Angus Council spokesman said: “There is still a set of indoor five-a-side goals and a boxing/martial arts-type trainer in the building at Lochside.
“We are looking at the viability of re-purposing this equipment with the possibility of providing it to suitable community groups or club.
“We’ve also been contacted by a local archery club regards the possible re-use of archery nets, which are fixed within the Lochside Leisure Centre.
“Discussions are ongoing regards the suitability of the nets and whether they could safely be removed from the building.
“As they are fixture of the building, they would not be available until after the conclusion of the judicial review.”
Forfar Conservative councillor Braden Davy said: “We need to make better use of council resources, it makes no sense for these items to sit idly by when they could be given a new lease of life elsewhere.
“I’m glad to see so much has already found a new home.
“We need to think about everything the council does, and use assets we own better. Whether that’s sports equipment, our buildings or our land.”
A decision to demolish the Lochside Leisure Centre remains the subject of a Judicial Review bid.
The council has instructed solicitors and counsel to defend its decision to knock down the building and act on the council’s behalf at the Court of Session following a legal challenge by Forfar businessman Mark Guild.