A MAJOR upgrade of a Council-run leisure facility has been approved.

Earlier this year Bradford Council announced that it would be spending £433,000 to upgrade Bowling Pool - adding a new gym and poolside sauna to the existing facilities.

It would be an “invest to save” scheme, with the Council predicting that increased use of the centre, and people switching from private gyms to the municipal facility, would easily pay for the project in the long run.

It would also boost the public purse at a time when the Councils across the country face significant financial problems.

Bradford's new Darley Street Market will have live music stage, late openings and seating for 500

The scheme had been inspired by the success of Sedbergh Leisure Centre - a £17.5 million facility that replaced the Richard Dunn centre last year.

It has been announced that in its first few months Sedbergh had doubled the amount of gym members that Richard Dunn had signed up.

A planning application for the re-modelling of Bowling Pool was submitted last month, and has now been approved by planning officers.

The new gym will include a studio, weights room and physio space, as well as better disabled access.

Opening times would also be increased - the facility will open from 7.30am to 10pm on Monday to Friday, 8.30am to 4.30pm on Saturdays and 9am to 4pm on Sundays.

Planning officers said the new additions to the centre would not harm local amenity, and that the existing car park would be adequate for the predicted increase in customers.

The Council had said work on the development would happen as soon as lockdown restrictions were lifted.