AT least one new swimming pool is needed in Bournemouth and Poole to meet demand from current and future customers.

A review of sports facilities in both towns has concluded that three additional 25m lanes will be needed in Poole by 2026, along with up to six additional lanes in Bournemouth.

It recommended that, by 2026, a new six to eight lane swimming pool is built in Bournemouth and a four-lane pool in Poole.

There is also unmet demand for artificial grass pitches, a shortage of badminton courts, a need to improve rugby pitches and a need to protect existing cricket grounds and pitches, according to the review.

It confirms the condition of the Dolphin Swimming Poole building will need to be addressed and that Slades Farm, King’s Park and Meyrick Park could benefit from improvements and new facilities.

The review, which went before Bournemouth council’s cabinet on Wednesday, stated all pools in Bournemouth and Poole were “now operating above ‘comfortable’ capacity for club and community use.”

New sites accessible to central Bournemouth will now be sought and there is also a possibility the LeAF Academy will build a 50m swimming pool at their Oak Campus. Active Dorset and Bournemouth council representatives will work with the academy to see if this could be opened up to the community.

Cllr Lawrence Williams, cabinet member for leisure, culture and tourism, said: “The Bournemouth and Poole Sports strategy has been developed to ensure that we continue to provide high quality sports facilities in the town.

“Adults in Bournemouth are amongst the most active people in the South West and we want to encourage even more people to enjoy the diverse range of sports available. The council will look to work with a number of partners to achieve the overall aims of the strategy.”