Pool supporters urged to take plunge

Campaigners battling to see a new pool built in a Norfolk market town are appealing for everyone to sign up to swim and prove to prospective developers there is a demand for the facility.

Campaigners battling to see a new pool built in a Norfolk market town are appealing for everyone to sign up to swim and prove to prospective developers there is a demand for the facility.

The dream of having a new leisure and fitness centre built in Swaffham is closer to reality than ever before after Swaffham Town Council completed the purchase of a piece of land between the Ecotech Centre and the A47 last month.

The £70,000 deal means land is definitely available on which to build a pool and allows Swaffham and District Swimming Pool Association (SPA) to concentrate on seeking a private company to build and run the proposed complex.

The SPA says that there is already a company interested in developing the facility, which would consist on a pool and a gym, but does not want to name the interested party at such an early stage in the negotiations.


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However, it is clear that a key factor in any investment decision will be proving that enough people would use the new pool to make it profitable.

The SPA is now calling on everyone in the town and surrounding villages to become a member of the association and show just how much a swimming pool is wanted by local people.

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Marion Clements, chairman of the SPA, said: “The association has been working to get a swimming pool for 12 years but since the 60s there have been people campaigning for a swimming pool in Swaffham.

“The town council have been very forward looking and they have bought the land and now it is all systems go to find the funding to build the pool.”

“We have now got to convince the company that there are enough people who would use it.”

The SPA already has more than 1,000 members but every new member who joins increases the strength of its case.

Various sources of funding are being looked at to build the pool and gym complex, which could cost up to £3m, but it would be down to a private company to run it and ultimately make it profitable.

The interested company says that once funding has been found for the build it will take about 18 months to complete the facility.

“We have got to do something with this site in the next five years,” added Mrs Clements.

“Now is the time to get this pool.”

Membership of the Swaffham and District Swimming Pool Association costs £2 a year or a household membership can be bought for £5. SPA pin badges to boost campaign funds can also be bought from committee members for £1.

For more information go to www.swimmingatswaffham.co.uk or call membership secretary Ruth Saunders on 01760 440378.

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