What latest agreement means for Kirkham Swimming Pool

Coun Cheryl Little hailed the agreement which means public swimming will continue at Kirkham Swimming Pool for the next five years.
Coun Cheryl Little hailed the agreement which means public swimming will continue at Kirkham Swimming Pool for the next five years.
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Public swimming at Kirkham Swimming Pool will continue to be provided by the YMCA for the next five years after an agreement with Fylde Council.

It follows a previous service level agreement between Fylde and the YMCA which ran from 2014 until March 31 this year.

Public swimming will be held at Kirkham Swimming Pool for another five years

Public swimming will be held at Kirkham Swimming Pool for another five years

Councillors were told that if no agreement was made, public swimming could be put at risk.

The agreement, which runs until March 2024, includes an annual subsidy payment by the council to the YMCA of £39,924 per year, subject to a series of conditions.

Although Kirkham Swimming Baths was transferred to the ownership of Fylde Coast YMCA in 2009, the agreement allows the council to ensure public swimming is provided at the amenity.

Coun Cheryl Little, chairman of the Tourism and Leisure Committee, said: “We have voted in support of the agreement continuing because we are happy with the current arrangement with our partners from the YMCA.”

The subsidy had previously been set at a lower level, between £35,000 in 2014/15 to £38,874 in 2018/19, but the sum has risen due to inflation.

A council report stated: “Kirkham Baths is invaluable to residents within the rural communities of Fylde, especially the rural primary schools who are often unable to travel to other borough swimming pools due to costs.”

Kirkham is one of three swimming pools in Fylde borough considered by Sport England to be directly accessible to the general public, the others being Ribby Hall and St Annes Pool.

Councillors were told there was a second option, which was not to vote in favour of the new five-year agreement.

However, this would mean that although the council would make a saving of £39,000 per anum over the next five years, the continued provision of swimming and other sports facilities at Kirkham Pool site might be placed at risk without on-going financial support to the YMCA for the operation of the facilities.