A new indoor swimming pool could be open to bathers in St Neots before the end of the year - with a splash park for youngsters on the cards for next year.

And there has already been interest in the St Neots Aquatic and Leisure charity, which is now behind the project, providing other splash parks in the town.

Mick Marks, chairman, said the pool and splash park would be located on the site of the old outdoor pool - which was knocked down some years ago - and the pool would be linked to the bowling alley.

He said: "We are saying that, depending on Huntingdonshire District Council and planning, we are hoping the swimming pool will be built this year and the splash park ready for next year."

Mr Marks told The Hunts Post they had two potential providers for the pool, who would build it and then recoup the cost through charges for swimming and courses, and two builders in the frame for the splash park.

He said the single-depth pool would be 25m in length with four lanes, the same size as the existing One Leisure pool.

It would be of modular construction, much of which would be above ground level and take 20 weeks to build - with an estimated 25-year life span.

Mr Marks said the aim was to create a leisure area by adding to the bowling alley, which is close to the town's cinema and associated restaurants.

He said it was crucial that a plant building for the pool could be shared with the splash park.

Mr Marks updated a meeting of St Neots Town Council on the progress made in delivering the swimming pool and told councillors another application would have to be made for the £200,000 previously offered by the authority to help build the splash park as it is expected to cost more than £300,000

He told The Hunts Post there had already been interest from the new Wintringham Park development about the installation of a splash park.

"We hope to deliver other splash parks around St Neots when we can," Mr Marks said.

There was an outcry when the town's popular outdoor pool was closed and subsequently demolished as a result of the cost of major refurbishment.

Earlier plans to provide a replacement pool or splash park came to nothing.