The head coach of Deeping Swimming Club has spoken of her heartache as plans to redevelop the town’s pool look set to be scrapped.
Sam Peeroo said everyone at the club was devastated after South Kesteven District Council announced they were pulling the plug on £10m plans to refurbish Deeping Leisure Centre. The final decision is set to be made at a council meeting today.
The pool has been closed for more than a year after the building was badly damaged by floods.
Last week the Deputy Leader and Cabinet Member for Finance & Leisure, Cllr Adam Stokes, said the decision had to be made as the council could not afford the plans – but Ms Peeroo urged councilors to rethink their decision.
Council set to pull plug on £10m redevelopment plans for Deeping Leisure Centre
She said: “The decision not to do the work makes no sense, and is short sighted. The councilors need to look longer term, and find a way of cutting costs and getting the doors open.
“Deeping is a growing area – there are 700 houses planned to be built in the area in the town’s local plan. They will be filled with families, who will need leisure facilities.
“The nearest pools, in Stamford and Bourne, are ‘fun’ pools – there are only six swimming lanes.
“There is an increasing elderly population, who are being told to stay active, and swimming means they can do that by taking pressure off joints.
“I was so angry and frustrated when I heard the news. I always thought we would be able to go ‘home.'”
Since the pool was closed last year, the swimming club has used a number of facilities, including in Stanground, at Stamford School and at the Stamford local pool.
Sam said: “It has been a very turbulent year, moving around different pools. We have done our best to keep children in the water and swimming over the year.
“Financially it has been difficult for the club. We have had to recruit our own lifeguards, hire storage facilities, and we have not been able to hold our annual fund raising gala.
“There is a future for the club, and we will do everything we can to keep going.”