Swimming pool campaigners welcome new leisure strategy

Campaigners to save a community swimming pool have welcomed a new strategy which "recognises the need" to keep it in town.

The swimming pool at Teme Leisure Centre in Church Stretton
The swimming pool at Teme Leisure Centre in Church Stretton

Stretton Pool Action (SPA) started the "Save Our Pool" campaign to retain the Teme Leisure Centre in Church Stretton in 2016.

The Shropshire Council Leisure Facilities Strategy was unveiled in August, and is up for wider public consultation now.

The campaign group says they welcome the strategy, which "removes the tiering of facilities in the previous strategy and clearly articulates the particular demographics of Shropshire and the importance exercise, including swimming, to starting well, developing well and ageing well."

A spokeswoman for Stretton Pool Action said: "With a significant percentage of local populations, such as that of The Strettons, unable to travel to other pools for reasons, including age, lack of private transport, social deprivation and work commitments, the need to retain this Church Stretton’s local facility is just as great as when SPA started the “Save Our Pool” campaign.

"The Strettons Community Led Plan April 2020 clearly captured the current views of the local people with community facilities e.g. leisure centre, library, swimming pool being one of the top priorities for all age groups surveyed and being one of the items which most people wanted conserved and improved.

Value

Now is the opportunity for Shropshire Council to support the wishes of the local community for this wonderful part of a wonderful county.

She added: "SPA is extremely pleased to see in the strategy that two of the action plan strategic priorities recognise the need to retain and improve the Church Stretton facility and for the council to work with local partners to find funding for pool improvements.

"This is an opportunity not to be missed for all of us who really value and need (not want) to retain swimming in the Strettons – we urge your readers to respond to the questionnaire and tell the council again how much you value our facility and our pool.

"SPA would also like to thank Shropshire Council, who took over management of the leisure centre on April 1 this year, and the great local staff for all their hard work during Covid-19, which enabled the pool and centre to be reopened on August 24."

To view and comment on the consultation, visit shropshire.gov.uk/get-involved/leisure-facilities-strategy

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