Save New Earswick Swimming Pool
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The Friends of New Earswick Pool has been established to represent the residents of New Earswick, the pool user groups and all other interested associates of New Earswick Swimming Pool in the campaign to prevent Joseph Rowntree Housing Trust (JRHT) from closing the swimming pool permanently at the end of March 2018.
JRHT plans to replace the pool with a new community facility which offers greater value for money and which the whole community can benefit from. JRHT have stated three main reasons behind their decision to close the pool:
1. To bring it up to modern standards the pool needs an expensive upgrade, which would cost at least £1.3 million. Not doing this work, and keeping the pool open, was not an option.
2. The pool loses money every day it is open and we do not think that we can continue to use JRHT money, funded by our residents, in this way. The pool lost over £130,000 last year. These losses have been paid for with money from other parts of our organisation.
3. The pool is not a widely used facility and is not open to the general public. It is used only by pre-booked groups. We want to provide a facility which many more of our residents can benefit from.
JRHT have now started canvassing opinions of New Earswick residents as to what they would like to see as the pool’s replacement. Some of the options are a children’s play park; a community garden; a climbing wall and a health & wellbeing centre. Unfortunately, a swimming pool is not amongst the potential options.
What JRHT have failed to communicate is:
1. JRHT have chosen to operate the pool at a loss each year through below average hire fees;
2. JRHT have chosen to limit public access by only hiring the facility to clubs/groups and not providing public access;
3. The pool has more than 2,100 visits per week - 48 weeks per year! There are more than 13 user groups who access the pool, ranging from swim lesson providers, competitive swimming clubs, recreational swimming clubs, disability swimming groups, military groups, rehabilitation groups, parent and toddler groups, school groups, elderly care groups.
In 1966 the children at Joseph Rowntree School were asked to donate "HALF A CROWN" each week to a fund to build the pool, along with the villagers "buy a brick scheme". This was a large amount for these families to pay in those days, so to raise the money they spent all the summer organising jumble sales, doing chores and generally anything they could to raise as much money as possible.
The local community were passionate then about getting a swimming Pool, and are very passionate now about keeping this very well used facility.
We know we face a challenge to get the Trust to change their minds, BUT, with your help and support we will.
Today: The Friends of New Earswick Pool is counting on you
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