King Alfred Development

The council is working with its development partner, Crest Nicholson Regeneration, towards a comprehensive redevelopment of the 1.8 hectare King Alfred site. The main aim is to replace the ageing King Alfred Leisure Centre with improved, extended and modern sports facilities as part of a major mixed-use enabling development, the principal element of which is much-needed new homes.

An extensive ‘Competitive Dialogue’ procurement process with two shortlisted bidders was completed in 2015. On 21 January 2016, the council’s Policy & Resources committee appointed Crest Nicholson in partnership with the Starr Trust as the preferred developer. Since their selection, the council has worked closely with the developer to finalise legal terms. The King Alfred project is a complex and financially challenging major development that has required an extended period in which to conclude these arrangements. It is hoped that the development agreement will be entered into by 30 March 2019. Subject to satisfactory completion of this critical phase, the developer will then begin the detailed design process. Details of the planned programme will be published in due course.

The Crest Nicholson and Starr Trust team includes:

  • Sports centre architects: LA Architects
  • Master plan and wider development architects: Haworth Tompkins, winners of the RIBA Stirling Prize in 2014 for the Everyman Theatre, Liverpool
  • Construction: Crest Nicholson is planning to engage Willmott Dixon to deliver the sports facility.

Indicative illustrations of the development

These images are the initial designs for the site. Detailed plans will be developed as part of the next stage, in preparation for submission of the planning application and public consultation process.

Architectural illustrations of the King Alfred redevelopment from the Kingsway road (A259) and the side of the seafront.

Architectural illustration of the public space between the two buildings on the King Alfred redevelopment and an illustration of


Text transcript of the video (PDF 105KB)

Plans for the site


The sports centre will cost around £40 million. This will be largely paid for by the development of 560 flats on the site.

The council will contribute around £8 million towards the sports centre. This will be funded by the improved financial performance of the new centre compared to the old centre.

In September 2017, the council submitted, on behalf of the developers, a £15.2 million bid to the government’s Housing Infrastructure Fund (HIF). £300 million of the overall fund is aimed at bridging funding gaps in projects like the King Alfred, which have viability problems. In February 2018, it was announced that the King Alfred bid had been successful; the second highest award in the country. It is hoped that HIF funding arrangements will be finalised in early 2019.


Subject to completion of the contractual arrangements by March 2019, it is anticipated that Crest Nicholson’s consultation programme will start in the second half of 2019, with a view to submission of the planning application by mid-2020.

Sports centre

The sports centre is proposed to include:

  • 25 metre, eight lane swimming pool with moveable floor and 352 spectator seats
  • 20m by 10m teaching pool with moveable floor and a 400sqm leisure pool
  • Sports hall, the size of eight badminton courts and multi-purpose hall
  • 120 station gym, bike spinning room, workout studio, quiet activity studio and a sauna suite
  • Gymnastics centre
  • 3 rink indoor bowls hall
  • Martial arts dojo
  • Café
  • Crèche and soft play room
  • 200 space car park for sports centre users.


  • Around 560 flats in four main blocks
  • The highest block would be 18 storeys
  • 20% of flats will be affordable homes - for rent or shared ownership.

Frequently asked questions

Find out about other developments in progress, planned or proposed for the seafront.

Contact the project team

Please contact the major projects team for information about the King Alfred site: