Anger as most effective public swimming pool in Lichfield to close down

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A bombshell assertion to close down Lichfield’s simplest public swimming pool has provoked surprise and anger.
A campaign has been released to try to store the Friary Grange Leisure Centre with nearly three,000 people signing an online petition in just days.

The center, in Eastern Avenue, Lichfield, is used by colleges across the location, everyday amusement swimmers and is the base of Lichfield Swimming Club and additionally the Penguins Disability Swimming Club.
Lichfield District Council said that it might take an immediate £four hundred,000 for maintenance to preserve it open – and claimed a further £2million could be spent.
All the discussions a number of the councilors were held in private – supplying the public no risk to touch upon the closure until it was announced.
An on-line petition has been created to fight the plans – to sign it click right here.
Lichfield Swimming Club said that the decision placed its survival doubtful.
Club chairwoman Rachel Bentley advised Birmingham live: “Lichfield Swimming Club celebrated its fiftieth birthday recently. The membership currently coaches 115 swimmers elderly between eight-45 years who use the pool among two and six times according to week. They compete often, as people and as a part of a team. In our 50 years, we’ve visible at least 2,000 individuals experience what it’s miles to be part of a neighborhood network sports club.

“If we lose this facility our club is probable to fold, the kids will want to teach somewhere else, transferring faraway from their friends, dad and mom may be using longer distances and unluckily a few youngsters will surrender completely. With participation in the game, such a vital part of a wholesome life-style a facility like Friary Grange is vital to the entire city of Lichfield. We would urge the council to rethink its decision.”

“If people should journey as some distance as Burntwood or even further they certainly a gained’t hassle. This may be condemning the kids of Lichfield to a destiny wherein few discover ways to swim – and people that do have the capability to journey lengthy distances.
“What do councils exist for, if no longer to offer citizens the danger to stay healthily and additionally learn potentially existence saving skills? My youngsters are a lot greater confident having discovered to swim, understand how tough paintings leads to effects, and are healthy and fit. How can this be allowed to come to an end?”

The center will near in April 2020, Lichfield District Council and Staffordshire County Council revealed in a joint declaration – with people who aren’t relocated being made redundant.
Cllr Philip White, Staffordshire County Council’s Cabinet Member for Learning and Employability, commented: “Earlier this 12 months Staffordshire County Council served one-year’ note on Lichfield District Council to quit the joint person settlement for Friary Grange Leisure Centre. This supposed a new agreement needed to be set up for public use of the enjoyment center, which could also help The Friary School’s ambition to become an academy.”

Cllr Liz Little, Lichfield District Council’s Cabinet Member for Leisure and Recycling, commented: “We worked tough with the county council to attempt to create a revised settlement for Friary Grange Leisure Centre, but lamentably the age, circumstance, and funding required in the constructing became an emerging problem. It changed into clear that a new agreement might now not represent excellent value for council tax payers. To maintain the building open, funding of over £440,000 to cope with pressing issues inclusive of the roof, electrics and boiler might be required. This funding could only serve to hold the doors open for a finite time, and now not provide any enhancements that users could benefit from. Funding of a similarly £2 million to carry the ability up to modern standards could be required, and this sum may want to considerably boom following complete structural surveys.”

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