The council says it wants to borrow almost £6 million for a new swimming pool - just days after revealing plans for a new leisure centre a few miles away.

A new multimillion-pound pool could be built at the Withdean Sports Complex in Brighton as part of efforts to “invest in, improve and provide indoor sports facilities” across the city.

The proposal comes just days after Brighton and Hove City Council announced it would rebuild the King Alfred Leisure Centre either at its current site on Hove seafront or next to West Hove Sainsbury's.

A report set to be presented to councillors next week states it is “currently assumed” that the project would be financed from “corporate borrowing”, with the council potentially facing repayments of almost £300,000 a year over 40 years.

The Argus: Artists's impression of interior of £5.8 million of Withdean Sports ComplexArtists's impression of interior of £5.8 million of Withdean Sports Complex (Image: BHCC)

The plans would include a five-lane, 25-metre pool with changing rooms, toilets and other facilities.

The report, being presented to the culture, heritage, sport, tourism and economic development committee on Thursday (January 18), states: “A pool at Withdean Sports Complex would be accessible for many local schools to use.

“This is of key importance to ensure children in our city continue to learn to swim and are confident in the water - particularly as this was impacted so heavily during the pandemic and we are still catching up now.

“There are a number of primary and secondary schools within a two-mile radius of the centre.”

The new site would use and include “modern methods and technologies” for energy efficiencies, including heat pumps, microfiltration and solar panels, to help reduce its carbon footprint and running costs.

The Argus: Withdean Sports Complex highlighted in red and the proposed site in yellowWithdean Sports Complex highlighted in red and the proposed site in yellow (Image: BHCC)

"There are no currently identified funds to support these capital costs as the council has no earmarked reserves for increased swimming capacity and there are no unallocated capital receipts," the report says.

“It is currently assumed that this project would need to be financed from corporate borrowing. If the council was to borrow the £5.8 million required at a rate of four per cent, this would mean a loan repayment of approximately £296,000 per annum, assuming a 40-year lifespan/period.”

It is suggested that the new pool would make sufficient income to meet both operating costs and service loan repayments.

The news comes after the council launched its latest round of consultation on plans for the new King Alfred Leisure Centre.

The proposal was first discussed in 2017 because of the age and condition of the building.

It dates back to the 1930s and has endured extensive weathering due to its seafront location, with inefficiencies contributing to high utility and energy costs. Staff have also claimed that it is ridden with cockroaches.

Building work on the new leisure centre is due to begin in 2025.