Does Kettering need a new swimming pool?

Kettering Swimming Pool, 

Saturday, 18 April 2009
Kettering Swimming Pool, Saturday, 18 April 2009

Kettering councillors will meet this week to discuss the possibility of building a new swimming pool in the town.

With new swimming pools built in nearby Corby, Wellingborough and Thrapston in recent years, some feel Kettering has been left behind.

Now the authority’s opposition leader, Cllr Mick Scrimshaw, says this is a good time to consider a new pool.

He said: “Kettering’s pool is clearly in need of some refurbishment and this might therefore be a good time to consider the option of a new pool.

“Kettering Swimming Club, for example, have to hold their galas and competitions at other pools because the facilities at Kettering are not good enough.

“This not only inconveniences local swimmers and their families, it also means they spend thousands of pounds in neighbouring authorities that could help manage our own pool if spent locally.”

But despite a seeming public interest in a new pool, nobody at this stage knows how much it could cost the taxpayer.

Corby’s international swimming pool cost about £20m.

Cllr Scrimshaw said: “What we don’t know is what it would cost.

“Nor do we know if a new pool would bring in extra income that could help finance any borrowing that might be needed to build it or whether the scheme could be viable or not.

“We do know, however, that because of low interest rates there has never been a better time for local councils to consider large capital projects such as this, so if we were ever going to do it, now could be the right time.

“So Labour’s motion to look at the viability of a new swimming pool is simply designed to open up a conversation.”

The motion will be heard at the full council meeting on Wednesday (December 14) at 6.30pm in the council chamber.