A 50-year-old Highland leisure centre has been given a multi-million pound makeover.
The swimming pool at Thurso Leisure Centre has been completely refurbished with a new sauna and steam room installed.
A new reception, changing area and multi-purpose studio have been created and the pool area has been completely re-tiled.
The £3million investment has been carried out on behalf of Highland Council.
Local Thurso Councillor Donnie Mackay said: “It is just magic, it is really first class. It was badly needing done and now there are a lot more people using the pool and attending the keep fit classes.
“If only we could have such excellent facilities everywhere in Thurso I would be delighted. We really need to provide changing facilities for the surfers. Thurso could be boom town for surfing. This is a start.”
The leisure centre will be managed and operated by High Life Highland, the council’s arms-length charity, which manages many of the local authority’s leisure and recreation buildings.
Mechanical and electrical building services design provided by the firm Pick Everard assisted the council in reducing running costs and bringing back to life a dated building.
Doug Soutar, director at Pick Everard, said: “This was a complicated refurbishment which was carried out on a phased basis so that the leisure centre could remain in use.
“We incorporated new energy efficient mechanical and electrical services, including a biomass boiler.
“Our designs integrate an energy efficient ventilation system that is expected to save approximately 10% on revenue costs compared to traditional mechanical design options.
“We have also used LED lighting throughout the centre, which will save the council around 20-30% on the existing lighting energy costs as well as improving the lighting to meet current Sport Scotland recommendations.
“We have carried out the building services design and supervision on a number of swimming pool and leisure centre upgrades and extensions and have a wealth of expertise in this field. Using BIM (Building Information Modeling) is key to the way we work and we apply it to many of our projects to ensure cost and energy savings are delivered for clients.”
Inverness based Les Hutt Architects, provided the architectural design for the project. The main contractor was O’Brien Construction Ltd, Thurso, with project management by The Highland Council.