A second legal challenge over the decision to close Auchinleck Leisure Centre has been branded "unnecessary" by council bosses.

We reported earlier this week that Govan Law, acting on behalf of Auchinleck Leisure Community Committee (ALCC), said that it had "raised a second petition for judicial review in the Court of Session."

ALCC confirmed to the Chronicle in December that they had initially started legal action against EAC, believed to be over the local authority's handling of their decision to close the centre.

READ MORE: Campaigners in 'strong position' to reverse leisure centre closure plans

Concerns were raised that a consultation surrounding the closure did not include plans to reverse the decision taken back in October.

The centre was originally due to close completely by the end of November under plans announced by East Ayrshire Council (EAC), but that was then pushed back until January, and then further again until March.

Following the announcement of the second legal challenge, council bosses said the first challenge was accepted, with the current consultation expected to conclude and be reported to Cabinet in February.

Cumnock Chronicle: Many of the public want the decision reversed.Many of the public want the decision reversed. (Image: Charlie Gilmour)

A spokesperson for EAC said: "This consultation was put in place following the first legal challenge to the previous decision taken by Cabinet in October 2023, based on our omission to carry out an Equalities Impact Assessment and further appropriate consultation at that time.

"We accepted the grounds of the original challenge, stepped back from that previous decision and launched a fresh consultation to give all interested parties an opportunity to respond online or to attend a number of in-person community events.

"This current consultation is running until Monday, January 22.

"The effect of our response is that the first Petition should not proceed further as the legal challenge has been accepted and acted upon."

READ MORE: Campaigners launch 'second challenge' over Auchinleck Leisure Centre

They added: "The second Petition seems to be identical to the first and would therefore seem to be unnecessary, given the action we have already taken in response to the first Petition.

“There is, therefore, no legal challenge to the current consultation and it remains our intention to conclude this and report to Cabinet on February 7 as originally planned.

"Any further legal challenge to this consultation or its outcome would be a separate matter.”

Two in-person consultation sessions about the planned closure will be held on Thursday, January 11, from 6pm to 8pm, and on Saturday, January 13, from 1pm to 3pm, both at the Boswell Centre in Auchinleck.