A £25 million improvement scheme has been approved by Carlisle City Council.

The redevelopment of The Sands Centre got the go-ahead in a special meeting tonight.

The project will see a wide range of sustainable features that will support the councils' plan to reduce carbon emissions.

Voting was almost unanimous with only one opposing the decision and three abstaining from the vote.

Leader of Carlisle City Council, Cllr John Mallinson, said: "The Sands Centre redevelopment is a major project that will provide significant benefits.

"It represents a cornerstone in our plans to support our communities to continue to improve their health and wellbeing.

"There is a necessity to do the work. Carlisle desperately needs new swimming facilities.

"The Pools are out of date and the costs of doing nothing would be significant.

"It would cost more for the council to do nothing as we’d still need to invest in the current facilities to keep them functioning as they are.

"This is a one-off opportunity with a dual benefit of all the facilities being on one site.”

Construction on The Sands Centre redevelopment is expected to start later this year and is scheduled to be completed by summer 2021.

The existing Pools provision on James Street will remain in place until all construction at The Sands Centre has been completed.