Members of Neath Port Talbot Council have rejected a motion aimed at involving more councillors in decisions to do with the borough's Celtic Leisure service.

The motion was put forward by the council's Labour group at a full council meeting held in March, and proposed to set up a cross party working group in order to create a "clear, well evidenced business case," for bringing leisure services back in house.

It came after announcements that the service would not be brought back under council control this year due to restraints on the budget, with the move now delayed until April, 2025, at the earliest. Want less ads? Download WalesOnline’s Premium app on Apple or Android

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It is the second time the move has been delayed, after services were initially set to go back in house in 2023, with the aim of giving full control of all leisure centres and other facilities to the local council, allowing for a "more coherent approach" to opening hours and service delivery in centres across the borough.

Facilities that would be transferred in the planned move include Aberavon Leisure and Fitness Centre and Aqua-splash park, along with Neath Sports Centre and Pontardawe Swimming Pool. It would also see the transfer of staff into the employment of the local authority as well.

Labour members proposed the creation of the group, that would work towards setting up a business case for the future of leisure services, and involve all members, after some expressed disappointment over claims that they had found out about the latest delay from members of the public.

Cllr Cathy James said: "The aim is to make sure that any subsequent decisions about the future of leisure services in Neath Port Talbot are made transparently and in a co-operative manner, with all those who have a stake in the decision."

However, members of the independent coalition council turned down this proposal, and said it would clash with an existing group that had already been set up for the same purpose.

Cllr Cen Phillips urged members not to support the move and said: "My concern is if members agree to support Councillor James' motion to council today, it will only serve to delay the good work that has already started between the relevant stakeholders, and consequently delay a report back to members to determine the future of indoor leisure services."

The motion was later turned down after a recorded vote by members, with 23 supporting the proposal, 29 against and two abstentions. For the latest Neath Port Talbot news sign up to our newsletter here.