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Desirability of 3rd Pool

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    At the Estates Committee meeting on 21st July, which covered some very similar ground to the Horizon Update on 12th July, there was much discussion (some heated) on the desirability of a 3rd pool – in the west wing complex. I posted the text below in the Chat bar to the Estates meeting, but as it concerns Horizon objectives, I am pasting it here in the Horizon Forum as well, in case helpful.

    Surely the point about the third pool is that there is a long felt need (possibly growing given our age demographic) for a pool which suits both young children in the early stages of swimming, and older members who need warm water for comfort and hydrotherapy. The outdoor pool cannot provide this year-round without major expense at best, and the present indoor pool is optimised for serious swimmers who want to do lengths in cooler water – and cannot be adapted for both purposes. Moreover it does not need replacing.

    Capitalising on the space available from the redundant squash courts makes providing a 3rd, smaller, pool to meet these growing needs the most economic solution to a real requirement.


    How many (older?) members will actually use a pool intended for them and small children?. One group will want calm warm waters the other will add noise and fun. Not a match made in heaven. Use of the redundant squash courts is sensible but surely the cost of a third pool will be very high ?.

    Horizon Project

    Could we have the outdoor pool open all year so there would be no need for another indoor pool? Many people prefer to swim in the open air and find the outdoor pool too stuffy.


    We are going to extend the opening of the outdoor pool, probably until Christmas this year and then reopen as soon as possible after the maintenance is done in Jan/Feb.

    That will give us better understanding of usage and how outdoor pool usage affects indoor. It will also confirm our projections for operating costs.


    Totally against the needless expense and disruption of a third pool.


    Extra pool is a crazy idea. Fully support what looks like is being done, ie keep the outdoor pool open for longer. Great solution. Well Done.


    Agree that the older members/small children mix will not be desirable for either group. Makes no sense to me, and I also agree that this is needless expense and disruption. Having the outdoor pool open all year round at a warmer temperature in the Winter months makes far more sense.


    To group small children and the “elderly” together is inappropriate, nor is it right that the later want warmer water – we want a quiet corner to exercise in, particularly post op when actual swimming is not possible.


    I suspect the current pools meet most swimming needs of older members who may therefore be against a third pool. We need to get the views of parents of young children ( who may not have much time to participate in Horizon consultations). If a majority of parents of young children feel they need a third pool I would not oppose it. It would be unfortunate if older members voted down something genuinely wanted by the majority of younger members.


    I feel that the answer to many of the problems of overcrowding can be resolved by keeping the outdoor pool open all year round.


    With the rise in popularity of “wild” swimming and the well documented benefits of cold water immersion, could we not make better use of the lake ?


    I agree with those who oppose the need for a 3rd pool. It seems an unnecessary expense and should certainly wait until we have a better feel for how the extended opening of the outdoor pool helps relieve some of the over crowding.


    Swimming is the biggest single footprint at the club, and the more provision there is for it, the better. The current facilities, while decent enough, need to be updated.

    Paivi Dubois

    The ‘third pool’ suggested would be very different from the two longer lenghth ones indoors and outdoors. On the one hand it would serve as a teaching pool and on the other hand, in the afternoons and when children are at school or nursery and after 6pm when they are not allowed in the pool area, it would serve as an extra warmer pool for ‘leisure swimmers’ (as opposed to lane swimmers). It could also incorporate hydrotheraphy water jets for rehab purposes and relaxation. During the day, when not used for lessons it could also be used for aqua-aerobics freeing more space for lane swimming in the main pool. The number of children in the Club is projected to increase by over 50% in the next ten years. We already close the indoor pool to all but those booked into lessons from 4 to 6 o’clock from Monday to Friday as demand for lessons is so high. In years to come this issue will get worse. I believe there is a very good case for a second indoor pool. Keeping the outdoor pool open in the winter is a great addition for lane swimmers but cannot serve the purposes listed above. Teaching children to swim is a necessity not a luxury. I feel for my successors as chairmen of Swimming and Fitness who have to balance all these interests in years to come!

    Paul Purnell

    Surely it is possible to provide a cover for the outdoor pool at a fraction of the second pool cost? This would make the outdoor pool an all round the year pool and solve the problem of overuse of the indoor one.

    Paul Purnell

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