Shropshire Star

Campaign to get a new swimming pool in Bishop's Castle makes a huge fundraising splash

A vital campaign to raise a quarter of a million pounds to replace a 50 year old swimming pool has got off to a flying start.

The swimming pool at SpArC in Bishop’s Castle

The SpArC Leisure Centre's charity campaign had £70,000 in its pool fund in late November but by late January this had grown to £102,000.

It means that in two months the residents of Bishop's Castle and South West Shropshire had rallied round the Save the SpArC charity to the tune of £32,000.

But the target remains just as daunting with 11 months in which to make the remaining £148,000.

Fundraisers were quickly off the block on November 15, almost as soon as Mrs Mandy Thorn, the High Sheriff of Shropshire, launched the fundraising campaign.

On the same afternoon, some 30 adults were sponsored to swim as many lengths as they could in 50 minutes.

Graham Hemmings, Charity Treasurer said: "We would particularly like to thank our swimmers who have received sponsorship totalling £12,000 - an extraordinary achievement. The fastest swimmer managed 120 lengths in 50 minutes."

Jean Shirley, Chair of Trustees added: "we are also hugely grateful to local parish and town councils, especially those which have managed to be more generous this year than last."

The first event of 2024, a sale of sports goods and cake before a showing of the Little Mermaid film generated £350.

Activities planned include a quiz at the 100 House pub in Purslowe on March 13, Live Music, with Sam and the Hotrods, at SpArC on March 29, and an Easter Egg trail around SpArC on Easter Saturday.

The Charity is also seeking unwanted gifts to use as prizes. Either drop them at SpArC or email

Anyone wishing to make a donation to the SpArC charity can do so by making a BACS payment to "Sport & Art in the Community (SPARC) SW Shropshire, sort code 40-52-40, A/C 00030653.

For more information about the SpArC charity, see its Facebook page savethesparc

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