New sports centre opens in Leyton

Hundreds of new homes to be built on site of old sports centre

Feel Good Too Centre Official Opening

Council leader Clare Coghill cuts the ribbon to formally open the new sports centre at Ive Farm, Feel Good Too

A new outdoor sports centre has opened in Leyton – as Waltham Forest Council agrees to build more than 700 homes on the site of an old one.

The £11m centre at Ive Farm – officially now called ‘Feel Good Too’ – features “international-class sports facilities” including two floodlit all-weather pitches for hockey and football, a 60-metre running track, and six beach volleyball courts.

It was officially opened last month at a ceremony attended by Olympic gold medal winner Helen Richardson Walsh from England Hockey and Charlie Grainger and Sam Ling from Leyton Orient FC, which is now using one of the floodlit pitches for training.

Ive Farm

Ive Farm has no indoor sports facilities but does have a cafe

The new facilities at Ive Farm have been built adjacent to Jubilee Park, on the site of a former running track and sports pavilion that had lain derelict for several years. It is designated as Metropolitan Open Land, but the construction of the new sports centre was not significantly opposed.

Waltham Forest Council leader Clare Coghill said: “This is a great new facility in Leyton that will act as a sports hub for the whole borough, as well as a place where local residents can come along to keep fit, take part in sports, and make new friends in the local community.

“It’s an ideal place for local sports clubs to train as well as providing opportunities for groups of friends to come along and play just for fun.”

Leyton Orient FC training at Ive Farm

Youth players from Leyton Orient FC training at Ive Farm

The new sports facilities at Ive Farm are replacing some of those being lost at The Score Centre in Oliver Road, less than half-a-mile away, which the council now plans to redevelop for housing. At a cabinet meeting last month, it was agreed to build 715 homes there, in a scheme called ‘Coronation Square’. Half of the new homes will be designated as ‘affordable’ housing.

Cllr Coghill said: “Opening these new facilities means we can now proceed with the regeneration of The Score Centre site where we will be working with our partners, Taylor Wimpey, to provide quality homes for local people, as well as a new leisure centre and commercial spaces for local businesses to use.

“This is an exciting time for Leyton. This investment will bring real benefits for residents and businesses in the area.”

Beach volleyball courts at Ive Farm

The six beach volleyball courts can be used for international tournaments

The Coronation Square scheme is due to be built over the next ten years and will “create a new district with its own identity”. The site had originally been earmarked to provide 25 percent ‘affordable’ housing, but this was increased to 50 percent at last month’s cabinet meeting.

Waltham Forest Citizens (WFC), a network of local residents and community groups, had campaigned for the increase. Jess Hall, co-chair of the WFC housing team, said: “Affordable housing that is permanently linked to average local incomes is the only way that an average earner like me could buy a home and put down real roots in the borough.”

The 50 percent ‘affordable’ target for all new housing on public land is part of a pledge by Mayor of London Sadiq Khan.

For more information about the new sports facilities at Ive Farm: