A reopened Gateshead Leisure Centre could host boxing matches, live music, and football fan zones if plans for its resurrection are signed off.

Efforts to bring the shuttered leisure centre back to life are still proceeding ‘full steam ahead’, according to the team bidding to take control of the beloved facility from Gateshead Council.

The local authority closed down the massive sports centre last summer under controversial budget cuts that sparked a huge community backlash, but has since agreed in principle to an asset transfer that would see it taken over by new organisation Gateshead Active.

While those proposals are yet to be given final approval and a firm reopening date for the Prince Consort Road site has not been set, more details are emerging about the revival of the leisure centre.

Two applications have now been lodged with Gateshead Council, one of which would allow the nearby Corporation Club to relocate into the leisure centre and serve alcohol from its bar until 12.30am.

The second licensing application is from Gateshead Active and, if granted, would permit a wide range of activities within the centre to help its new management generate extra revenue to help keep it open.

That includes the sale of alcohol and staging events including boxing, wrestling, and live music.

Gateshead Active’s application states that such ideas will be needed to “build a secure future for the centre”’ that will allow it to remain as a venue for swimming, fitness classes, and other sports and community activities.

Former councillor Robert Waugh, who is a director of Gateshead Active, told the Local Democracy Reporting Service that there had been “lots of interest” in using the centre to stage events like boxing and comedy shows, while there are also plans to use it as a fanzone for major sporting occasions such as England football matches.

He added: “No matter how much good we are wanting to do as a charity, we can’t do that unless we are raising enough money to keep the doors open.”  Mr Waugh added that the Corporation Club’s section of the building would be “completely separated” from the leisure facilities.

The social club’s application describes it as a community hub for elderly people, offering activities such as coffee mornings and bingo, and “a lifeline in an environment where isolation and loneliness have become the norm for so many”.

Mr Waugh added: “It is certainly not going to be the kind of place where people would be frightened to bring their children. It will be safe, secure, and hopefully people will be reassured by the number of staff and the CCTV we will have.

“They want to open their doors to the community and to get everyone involved. It is going to be very much focused on attracting people who have been for a game of five-a-side or badminton and want to socialise afterwards.”

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Gateshead Active has announced a community drop-in session next week where local residents can hear more about the plans to reopen the leisure centre.

It will be held at Caedmon Primary School, from 5.30pm to 7pm on March 4.

Mr Waugh said: “We are working full steam ahead to cross the last few documents off the list and make the final few tweaks to our business plan, ready to submit it to the council for hopefully the final time. We are very confident in that final draft and hope to be able to confirm a solid date for reopening soon.”