THE bowling and leisure centre in Ramsey is a sign of the town’s regeneration, according to the town’s political leader.
As the Examiner reported earlier this week, the Sure Strike Bowling and Leisure Centre in the former northern swimming pool on Queen’s Promenade was opened with a flourish on Saturday. Chairman of the commissioners, Captain Nigel Malpass cut the ribbon.
Mr Malpass congratulated Alan Price and his team on their achievements, describing the centre as the ‘personification of Ramsey regeneration’. He also mentioned telecommunications company, Sure, which has promised three years’ sponsorship, and Faith in Action volunteers who lent practical support.
The commissioners acquired ownership of the building when the pool was decommissioned in July 2009. Following a process of advertising for expressions of interest for its future use, Alan Price’s Buffalo Bowling and Leisure’s proposal to create a tenpin bowling complex was seen as offering the greatest benefit to the town and resulted in the commissioners granting the company a 25-year lease.
The opening took the form of a family fun day. Ten winners of a competition run by a local radio station were the first to bowl.
There were juggling acts, balloon animals, face painting, a colouring competition, a magic show and, outside, a display of classic American cars. Children played in the soft play area and the American-style grill was open for refreshments.
Bar and catering manager Angela Davies is former general manager at the Sound Cafe and has also worked as events and conference co-ordinator at Mount Murray, Santon.
She said they were starting off with an introductory menu to find out what people want. The bar is awaiting a licensing decision.
As the rest of the building is completed, she hopes to offer children’s parties and corporate functions.
Brian Beattie, one of commissioners who attended the opening, said: ‘I am sure we made the right choice. The building really lends itself to the new purpose. I remember when it first opened in 1968.
‘No-one then would have envisaged it being turned into this fantastic leisure centre. It’s brilliant. I am sure it will bring a lot of people to Ramsey.’
The centre is open daily from 8am- 10pm, phone 812444.