Worcestershire Swimming Pools kept a float thanks to funding

More than 100 local authorities across England have received funding from the Swimming Pool Support Fund to help them keep public pools open in the face of challenging financial pressures.

In total, they have awarded 196 publicly owned leisure facilities with swimming pools from 102 authorities a share of £20.3m to support with increased cost pressures, associated with recent rises in energy and operating costs.

These pools and leisure centres were selected based on their risk of closure, the proximity to other swimming pools providing public swimming, and the level of demand for the facility.

The central Government fund, which was announced as part of the Spring Budget, is worth £60.3 million in total and is split into two phases.

In Worcestershire, two swimming pools have been supported in Phase 1, those being, Abbey Stadium Sports Centre in Redditch and Bromsgrove Sports And Leisure Centre. Phase 2 of the funding is set to confirm more support for Worcestershire with The Worcester Citizens Swimming Baths Association, Evesham Leisure Centre, Malvern Splash Leisure Complex and Perdiswell Leisure Centre also receiving funding.

“Swimming pools and leisure centres are vital community resources and are enormously important in helping people to be physically active,” said Lisa Dodd-Mayne.

“Many pools have faced a real and significant threat to their survival this year, as local authorities and operators have battled the challenge of increased energy and wider costs, weakened reserves and difficulties with retaining staff.

“Sport England is proud of the role we’ve played in supporting these facilities through this difficult period.

“We hope today’s funding announcement will enable more public pools to improve their energy efficiency to be more environmentally and financially sustainable, so they remain available for future generations to enjoy.”