Leicester Community Sports Arena

Fifteen badminton court size hall with 2400 retractable seats for events. Home to Leicester Riders Basket Ball club and rebranded in 2018 as Morningside Arena.

Cost: £5.2m with seating Location: Leicester Opened: January 2016 Cost per sq metre: TBC
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Project Challenges

We have faced a variety of challenges throughout our time developing sports halls. Each project generally presents its own set of complications, sometimes relating to existing structures, surrounding areas or site conditions and in other cases, it’s purely about budget, keeping numerous funding partners happy, or meeting a deadline.


Project Challenges

With a number of funding partners involved on this project, each cohort had their own varying requirement.

Basketball champions the Leicester Riders are the oldest, professional club in British basketball and one of the largest by membership. Riders sought a prestigious, commercial venue to bring in their fans and celebrate their accolades.

The wheelchair basketball team the Leicester Cobras would also make this their home.

Leicester College, one of the largest in the UK and committed to enriching the lives of all members of the community needed this project to work as a multi purpose, flexible indoor space.

Aiming to get more people to take part in sport, Leicester City Council and Sport England required an accessible community sport provision.

Our main challenge was to bring these partners together and fully satisfy all of their needs, under one roof.

In addition, the site was situated on an old gas works, next to a canal  - presenting a complex set of environmental challenges.

Project Solution

Each unique set of circumstances, is thought about and considered, in depth, by Ball Hall at the outset of the project. We bring all of our previous experience and expertise to the fore and try where possible, to apply a combination of creative and pragmatic thinking to problem solve in each case.


Project Solutions

We managed this project by close cooperation and continued engagement with all stakeholders throughout the entire project. Providing consistent progressive updates at every stage, was essential. From the detailed costing plan and design all the way through the planning and development to the opening ceremony.

The ground-breaking 2,000+ seat arena for Leicester Riders is the first of its kind. It has provided Leicester with the largest and most flexible indoor space in the city. It is successfully being used for conferences, exhibitions, music and comedy events, large-scale dinners, celebrations, product launches, parties, weddings and other special events.

Ball Hall Added Value

With all the difficulties of a project considered upfront and contingency built in for unforeseen events or conditions, Ball Hall deliver outstanding buildings for sport. A Ball Hall Sports Hall often exceeds expectation and consistently becomes a flag waving celebration for the organisation, with many further benefits that materialise over time.


Ball Hall Added Value

When we looked at Sport England’s costing models for this project, they were significantly above double our cost projections based on our efficient but still outstanding design.

We knew we could achieve exactly what the funding partners required without compromise on quality or time scales and we could make it more affordable.

After what was was essentially an in-depth trust exercise; meeting with financial experts who performed a full audit of our cost plan etc, the tender process came out as we expected and we were proved correct.

In terms of the environmental factors, we managed the remediation of the site, using specialist ground investigation consultants, who advised on the most appropriate method of dealing with the contamination problem including the application of microbes and treatment of some contaminants in-situ prior to removing the material (once clean) from site.

The successful completion of this flagship project was recognised as the kick start to the regeneration of the whole of that district of Leicester.

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"It’s a based on a design that works in terms of its function and this was translated into a construction project that meant it was delivered ahead of schedule. As a result we were able to get a lot more out of the building that we’d originally contracted for. Every aspect of its design works.”

Kevin Routledge - Chairman of the Leicester Riders

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