Campaigners are turning up the pressure after the ‘temporary’ closure of two Huddersfield leisure facilities due to spiralling costs.

The swimming pool at Colne Valley Leisure Centre in Slaithwaite closed on Friday along with Deighton Sports Arena and Batley Baths & Recreation Centre.

Save Our Colne Valley Swimming Pool is fighting to re-open the pool at Slaithwaite while a campaign group in Deighton says the loss of the centre is a devastating blow to the local community.

More than 100 people attended a public meeting on Tuesday in Slaithwaite and a GoFundMe page has been set up to raise £25,000. A steering group will be formed in the New Year.

There will be a protest outside the centre today (Saturday December 17) at 1pm when campaigners will make their feelings clear.

There was a protest outside Deighton Sports Arena on Thursday night and campaigners, backed by the union Unison, are considering legal action to force a judicial review.

Kirklees Active Leisure (KAL), a charity set up to run Kirklees Council’s 12 sports and leisure centres, caused uproar when it announced that the three facilities would be closed until March in a bid to save money. KAL says it has been hard hit by the rising cost of energy and the closure decisions will be reviewed in March.

Campaigners in Slaithwaite have met with KAL chief executive Alasdair Brown who maintained the closures were “temporary” and said savings had to be made before the end of the financial year.

Spokesman Sarah Gledhill said Mr Brown told the group that Kirklees Council was this week expected to announce its proposed budget for next year which was likely to impact on KAL’s finances because of cuts to funding. KAL’s finances were also under pressure from rising energy costs and the National Living Wage.

Sarah added: “The future for our pool in the Colne Valley is definitely not a secure one and the campaign is going to continue to try and save it.”

At the Deighton protest mum-of-two Louise Lewis said: “We have been in Covid, we’ve been in lockdown for two years and people’s mental health has suffered.

“We’ve got a lot of crime in the area amongst our children and they need somewhere to come to keep them off the streets. This is not good enough KAL. This is not good enough Kirklees Council.”

Basketball player and coach Eugene Andrew said: “This centre is the heartbeat of Huddersfield and they are trying to kill it.

“They are not looking at the bigger picture, they are looking at the bottom line. We are not giving up the centre without a fight.”