Petition launched calling for support for town-centre swimming pool
A petition calling for public support for a town-centre swimming pool has been launched by a group of councillors.
Shrewsbury's Liberal Democrat Councillors are behind the petition, which says that the town's Quarry Pool must not be closed.
The facility has been the subject of much speculation in recent years, but Shropshire Council says there has been no decision taken on the pool, and its future – although Councillor Robert Macey, the authority's cabinet member for culture, leisure and tourism, did say "it is clear that the facility is reaching the end of its economically viable life".
The comment comes as the Quarry's main pool has been closed for more than a year for repairs after routine inspections identified that corrosion had caused ceiling panels and ventilation units to become unsafe.
Councillor Macey said the authority said it is currently focused on plans to develop a 'competition standard' pool at Shrewsbury Sports Village in Sundorne, and they would assess options for The Quarry as it get closer to opening.
The Lib Dem petition comes after an updated schedule for Shropshire Council's priority capital schemes was published, showing £27.5m earmarked for "replacement of existing swimming provision at the Quarry with new provision within Shrewsbury."
Councillor Alex Wagner, Lib Dem representative for Bowbrook, said: "The Quarry Pool is the jewel in the crown of Shrewsbury’s leisure facilities, and plans to shut it evoke strong emotions and upset among local residents.
"We have had to campaign hard to push the administration to get the main pool re-opened in a timely manner, and worked closely with Shrewsbury Swimming Club to keep them afloat with the financial issues this posed.
"Now we need to once again ask for public support to protect the Quarry Pool’s future."
Councillor Macey said: "Shropshire Council is fully committed to maintaining swimming facilities in Shrewsbury and will endeavour to deliver uninterrupted provision in the town.
“We are keen to develop the leisure offer at Shrewsbury Sports Village where there is the potential to provide an excellent competition-standard, Shropshire-wide swimming facility and to make this a more sustainable centre in the future.
“This year alone we have invested £400,000 in work to maintain The Quarry pool to ensure continuity of swimming provision for Shrewsbury, but it is clear that the facility is reaching the end of its economically viable life.
“As we get closer to opening the new pool, we will take stock, exploring partnership opportunities and alternative approaches to service provision and funding for the Quarry site. No decisions have yet been made.”