While the new plans to restore the Oasis dome have been welcomed by all, there are still some concerns over other aspects. 

SevenCapital made a planning application for approval in principle to replace the Grade II listed dome's panels with a special material also used in the Eden Project. 

This was met with an overwhelmingly positive response by all interested parties, including Swindon Borough Council, Historic England and the Save Oasis Swindon (SOS) campaign. 

But, these plans also showed that the leaseholders intend to remove the sports hall, which once served as Swindon's largest music venue, and replace it with individual indoor football pitches.

Swindon Advertiser: SevenCapital's plans for the Oasis Leisure Centre, SwindonSevenCapital's plans for the Oasis Leisure Centre, Swindon (Image: Swindon Borough Council)

Sport England has written to Swindon Borough Council about this, indicating that it feels it should have been consulted about the loss of another general sporting facility in the town. 

In the letter, the organisation said: "It is the view of Sport England that the organisation should have been consulted on the above application as a non-statutory consultee as advised by the National Planning Policy Guidance."

It added that it would seek to comment on the application within 21 days.

For the public, the loss of the sports hall would mean a reduction in general-purpose sporting venues in the town, with the only other large sports hall in Swindon, the Link Centre, currently not usable. 

Commenting on this, Helena Bowie, said: "We have a few small sports halls but nothing suitable for large events. The Oasis was the largest regional hall for boxing events isn't this a blow to our economy?"

But not retaining the Oasis sports hall would also leave a void in the town's live-music offerings, with no suitable venue for touring bands to visit. 

On Twitter, Emma Williams said: "The sports hall was not of architectural significance but it had cultural significance. It was where the band Oasis got its name from and served the whole of Swindon with many cultural events that brought us all together.

"The venue for music was not ideal but at least bands came."

The future of the Oasis has hung in the balance since its closure in 2020, with SevenCapital initially drawing up plans that replaced the roof, which were scuppered by the listing decision. 

Since then the business has claimed to struggle to find a viable option to reopen the leisure centre, with these latest plans the first sign of real progress.