HEREFORDSHIRE Council has agreed to spend up to £505,000 on essential works needed to reopen Hereford Leisure Pool.

The council-owned pool in St Martin’s Avenue, which is run by Halo Leisure, was flooded in October last year.

The electricity supply was damaged which led to the on-site water pumps to failing.

The site has remained closed since while insurance funded works take place to reinstate it.

But some £505,000 will be needed to spend on extra works which are not covered by the insurance claim.

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These include an electrical upgrade, fire alarm replacement, lighting and work to the plant room, lightning protection, anti-climb measures for the roof, roof mounted pipework and concrete repairs.

The uninsured works are needed to reopen the site to the public, which is expected to be before spring next year.

Commissioning, procurement, and assets cabinet member Gemma Davies who proposed the investment told yesterday's (October 9) full council meeting it was important that the pool reopened.

“The reposition of the pump room will ensure that it greatly minimises the likelihood of any flooding to take place in future.

“Swimming is a 0 to 99 and higher year-old activity. Encompassing all abilities. It has a significant impact on both the physical and mental wellbeing of our residents.

“I’m a proud Southsider of Hereford and I know my other South Wye councillors are very keen on us reopening the centre.

“I feel this is the right decision to make for the residents of Herefordshire. It’s not just people from within Hereford city who use our leisure pool.”

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Tupsley councillor Jim Kenyon said he fully supported the recommendation and said “The swimming pool has looked a little sad for a few years,” he said.

“I’ve mentioned to the cabinet member about perhaps spending a bit more on slides and making it a bit more interesting to encourage young children to go along and engage with it.”

And Hinton and Hunderton councillor Kevin Tillett said it was hugely important for the community south of the river and the wider county.

“This is an all wards issue. It is a county facility.”

Councillors from the market towns said they supported the proposals but asked for investment in leisure centres in Bromyard and Ross-on-Wye.

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Bromyard Bringsty councillor Nigel Shaw said: “I’m very pleased to support investment to allow the reopening of the Hereford leisure pool facilities before spring 2021.

“Unfortunately, the citizens of Bromyard and surrounding areas have received no such promise in respect of their leisure centre and library.”

Ross West councillor Louis Stark also said he fully supported the proposals.

“It should be reinstated as soon as possible,” he said.

“However, Ross has two county owned sports facilities that were also severely damaged in the flooding that occurred in February.

“I would expect equal treatment for the two sports facilities in my ward.”

The proposals were approved by 48 votes in favour and two abstentions.


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