Demolition workers have moved in to flatten Huddersfield’s former Sports Centre.

But it will be some time before people notice much difference on the sprawling site, as it’s a “softly, softly” approach.

The team from Demex Ltd, the South Yorkshire-based demolition experts, plan to soft-strip all the buildings on the site over the next few weeks before actual demolition starts.

VIDEO: Last look round Huddersfield Sports Centre site

Video Loading

Their task will be to salvage all the recyclable material such as metal, timber and plastics which are included in the buildings on the complex, including the Centre itself, the Ibbotson and Lonsbrough tower blocks of flats, a former car park and the old Kirklees Council computer centre.

There is also a range of former commercial and industrial buildings off Old Leeds Road which are to go.

The Sports Centre closed last summer when Huddersfield’s new £34m Leisure Centre opened.

As the demolition teams moved in, the Examiner was allowed in for a quick peek at the former main hall, the climbing room and the swimming pools.

It’s a 30-week project and one which is in the hands of project manager Scott Newton, of Holmfirth.

Demolition contractors start work on the former Huddersfield Sports Centre. Project manager for the demolition, Scott Newton.

As a local lad he is delighted that it’s a Yorkshire company doing the work.

“It would have been a shame if an outsider had come in to get rid of part of Huddersfield’s history.

“As a boy, I used to play football in the Sports Centre and I know it well.

“The job has now started but there is a lot of preparatory work involved, bringing cabins and equipment on site.

“Then we have the specialists in our team who will go in and remove asbestos from the buildings. It has to be tackled in a prescribed manner and there is more asbestos in some of the buildings than there is in the others.

Demolition contractors start work on the former Huddersfield Sports Centre. Project manager for the demolition, Scott Newton in the old climbing wall room at the sports centre.

“We will be doing a soft-strip of all the buildings and recycling what we can. Timber is particularly useful and we may well end up using that in part of the work we are doing, protecting the roadways from damage.

“The first big machines will be coming on site later this week and then we will be bringing in cranes to tackle the larger buildings and to hosit a debris curtain around the area to stop material getting off the site”.

READ MORE: Demolition crews to move in to Huddersfield Sports Centre site

READ MORE: Splash pool closed for urgent repairs at Huddersfield Leisure Centre

The flats will be demolished piece by piece, with controlled explosions ruled out of the equation because of the busy roads and services such as gas and water across the site.

Kirklees Council plan to market the site for possible redevelopment once it has been levelled.