Swimming pool shut for school holidays

Parents say they feel 'let down' by a decision to close Garstang's only public swimming pool over the school summer holidays.

Thursday, 13th July 2017, 4:40 pm
Updated Tuesday, 18th July 2017, 8:32 am
Garstang YMCA Swimming Centre is set to close until September 4

Garstang YMCA Swimming Centre is set to be shut from July 24 until September 4 for a “major refurbishment” forcing families from around the area to travel 12 miles to the nearest pool.

The Oak Road centre will close for 42 days, but Wyre Council, which runs the site, said it could not provide any more details on the work.

The nearest public pool is in Poulton with Acresfield Health Club and Spa in Garstang only open to members.

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Garstang town councillor and mayor Peter Ryder says the move is disappointing for families in the area.

He said: “I think everyone appreciates this is essential work which has to be carried out.

“However, it seems this is the second year running it has come about in the school holidays when you would hope school children would be looking to utilise the facility.”

School holidays dates can vary throughout Wyre by a couple of days but Garstang Community Primary School breaks up for summer on July 25 and goes back on September 1.

Garstang resident Mike Flint was one of many who wasn’t happy with the decision, saying it showed school contracts to use the pool were more important than providing facilities to local youngsters.

“It’s a shame that the schools’ monies are so important to the pool that the kids on holiday have to suffer,” he posted on Facebook.

And Cath Rowe agreed, writing: “What a ‘sensible’ time of year to close the swimming baths. I think they should put a bus on to take families to Kirkham baths.”

The Oak Road centre is owned by Lancashire County Council but managed by Wyre Council.

The centre was also closed at the same time last summer while £140,000 of work was carried out.

This included a full refurbishment of the men’s and women’s changing rooms.