Help us to bring open air swimming back to Abergavenny!
The Abergavenny Lido Group has been formed in response to social media interest on Abergavenny Voice and local media. There is a positive consensus that an outdoor swimming pool should be brought back to Bailey Park.
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A little bit of background
Currently there is a resurgence in outdoor swimming, and as a result outdoor pools across the UK have been unable to cope with demand. There are so few outdoor pools, to cater for so many, that most facilities are full to capacity and are operating on a one-in, one-out basis at peak times.
Throughout the UK there are campaigns to reinstate lost and disused lidos. Wales falls very short, with only Lido-Ponty returning to use, a couple of years ago.
With the increasing demand for people to swim, bathe and de-stress in outdoor facilities all over the UK, a new Abergavenny facility would help to tap into this increasing potential revenue stream. This would attract elite athletes, competitions and events, add further attractions for tourists, local people and the wider community and those with interests in other things such as the Abergavenny food and cycling festivals.
The Abergavenny Lido Group envisages a new facility, open daily, throughout the year, providing different types of swimming and water based activities, which could change seasonally.
The facility would be multi-functional, able to accommodate and host other activities as well. With a proposed 50m pool and learner pool, it would attract and host competitions and events.
The Abergavenny Lido Group has run a petition which so far, has collected several thousand signatures online and face-to-face.
There is clearly a demand for such a facility. Help us make the dream become a reality!
Read on to see how you can help bring the pool back to Bailey Park.
What could a new pool look like?
The 'footprint' of the old pool shows the original location
Proposed new footprint
Artist's impression of the new pool
At this early stage of the campaign, our proposals are not fully formed. Until we have paid for feasibility studies and obtained all the necessary reports, we are not in a position to make final decisions and proceed in turning our vision into reality.
As a group we have started to look at the way similar facilities operate around the UK. We have ideas about what we would like to include in a new outdoor pool facility. We have consulted with members of the public, to see what sorts of things they would like at this stage. We want to consider all of our options and want to bring back a facility that will provide alternative and complementary choices to those that already exist in the area.
We want to build an outdoor swimming facility that will be unique to the area, well used, and will enhance people's experiences of swimming, especially during the summer months.
As a group, we believe that rebuilding an outdoor pool facility in Bailey Park would enhance the area and would not act in direct conflict with the indoor facility attached to King Henry VIII School. Indoor and outdoor facilities can work together to bring more leisure activities to Abergavenny.
A viable quality restaurant/café could operate throughout the day and through the seasons. This would increase footfall to the park, which in turn could encourage other groups to use the park facility regularly.
The very first thing we need to do is commission a full feasibility study to get all the costs agreed before anything begins.
A study such as this needs to cover everything from professional services fees such as planning, surveying, architectural and construction costs and will need to be funded.
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