A NEW £5.7m day centre with a community swimming pool set to open next year will be the ‘jewel in the crown’ for Bolton’s care sector, councillors have heard.

Bolton’s planning committee unanimously approved the relocation of the Jubilee Centre, a day-care centre with a hydrotherapy pool for adults and young people with learning and physical disabilities at the former site of Firwood Special School, Crompton Way.

It will replace the existing Jubilee Centre on Tennyson Street, Halliwell, which was built in 1983 and has been deemed unsuitable for future use.

The centre is operated by Bolton Cares, the council-owned adult social care company.

Outlining their vision, an official said: "The overall ambition is to redevelop the site and provide a state-of-the-art day centre with hydrotherapy pool for adults with learning and physical disabilities, young people with autism, and young people with disabilities who have left school and are transitioning to adulthood.

“It will be a non-institutional, vibrant, light, airy, modern, warm, friendly, varied, technically up to date, acoustically sensitive and have high-value finishes with the wow factor.

“A place that doesn’t look like a day centre has an ambience of calm and purpose."

The centre will also include a gym, cinema, sensory rooms and many other facilities.

Cllr Andy Morgan, cabinet member for social care, said: “This will be the jewel in the crown for Bolton Cares. It will be fit for purpose and future proof.

“The building will be a flexible space so will not just be a building that never changes, it will be able to adapt to future requirement.

“It’s really exciting and hopefully it will come to fruition in the very near future so we can close down the Tennyson Street site.”

Cllr Elaine Sherrington added: “We’ve been waiting a long time for this. It’s a beautiful location but handy for the ring road.”

The Tennyson Street site will be handed to the Department For Education to build a new school in order to meet increasing demand for school places in Bolton.They will soon require possession of the site, to achieve their target to build the new school for a 2024 opening.