THE future of a popular outdoor education centre is in doubt due to “ongoing financial losses” and lack of investment.

The Hengistbury Head Outdoor Centre is currently operated by Brockenhurst College.

But a spokesman for the college said it is planning a “managed exit” from the centre and that consultation is currently under way with staff.

BCP Council is now in talks with the college about how to secure its future.

Councillor Mohan Iyengar, Portfolio Holder for Tourism, Leisure and Culture, said: “We have been notified of Brockenhurst College’s intention to leave the Hengistbury Head Outdoor Education Centre and we will be having further conversations with them in the next few days.

“We know this will be an unsettling time for everyone involved with the centre and we are keen to move forward and plan how we can secure the future of community watersports here, initially in the short term. We are unable to comment any further until we have more information.”

A spokesperson for Brockenhurst College added: “It is with great regret that we propose to end our lease agreement at Hengistbury Head Outdoor Education Centre. This will be subject to the outcome of a staff consultation.

“The centre has been closed since March 2020 due to Covid-19, and it is still unclear when operations could fully resume. The college is unable to absorb ongoing financial losses at the centre. In addition, the building requires ongoing investment to maintain it and significantly more investment would be required to replace it.

“Due to the combination of these major issues we have decided that a managed exit is the most appropriate way forward.”

The centre is situated on the shore of Christchurch harbour with views over the Stanpit March Nature Reserve.

It is accessed via Broadway at Hengistbury Head in Bournemouth and is near the Hungry Hiker cafe.

Popular with individuals, families, schools and other organisations, the centre offers a wide variety of activities for all ages.

Activities include paddle sports, power boating, sailing and multi-activity days with one-off events or courses available.

The centre, which employs a team of experienced and qualified staff, was also threatened with closure in 2009 but Brockenhurst College stepped in to save it.