'Depressing' options for Haslingden's troubled pool

First published in News Lancashire Telegraph: Photograph of the Author by

HASLINGDEN’S troubled swimming pool could close and be sold to help ease Rossendale Council’s financial woes.

That is one of two options recommended by council officers in a cabinet report due to be debated next Wednesday.

It also suggests that the responsibility for running of the baths, in East Bank Avenue, could be transferred to another organisation if it is not closed.

The pool is currently run by Rossendale Leisure Trust, but would require a £1.5million boost to be brought up to scratch as it suffers from ‘concrete cancer’.

A panel has been set up to discuss the future of the pool, although it is not a decision-making body and cannot make a final decision on its fate.

A separate assessment group has drawn up the options that will be presented to councillors next week.

Other options, including leaving the pool as it is, building an alternative pool in the Valley and reducing current operating costs were dismissed by the assessment group.

Michael McGrath, a campaigner for the pool, said the options put forward were ‘depressing’.

He said: “I, like many other people in Haslingden, are dismayed at the way the whole thing has been arrived at.

“We thought the reducing costs option was feasible and any price rises for users would have been reasonable.

“Some very dubious criteria has been used in this process.

“The option of transferring responsibility is a good idea but needs much more work and has so far not been pushed by the council to the extent it should have been.”

He said the pool panel had questioned Coun Andrew MacNae, borough portfolio holder for regeneration, leisure and tourism, ‘intensively’.

The Haslingden swimming pool was built in 1936 and had 78,300 users in 2011/12, including 13 weekly sessions for primary school pupils and disabled children.

Rossendale Leisure Trust has been told to save between £100,000 and £200,000 per year as part of broader council cuts.

Comments (11)

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8:07pm Fri 23 Nov 12

mavrick says...

This is what Tories are all about, many people in Rossendale voted for the Tory party and have got what they voted for,
This is what Tories are all about, many people in Rossendale voted for the Tory party and have got what they voted for, mavrick
  • Score: 0

8:12pm Fri 23 Nov 12

pdb951 says...

What does our wonderfull MP have to say on this matter?
What does our wonderfull MP have to say on this matter? pdb951
  • Score: 1

9:39pm Fri 23 Nov 12

mavrick says...

Ask Jake,
Ask Jake, mavrick
  • Score: 0

10:51pm Fri 23 Nov 12

her from here says...

The Labour Council used the money for a new pool in Haslingden to pay for the tarmac centre in Rawtenstall.They changed one eyesore for another and haslingden lost out. Shame on them
The Labour Council used the money for a new pool in Haslingden to pay for the tarmac centre in Rawtenstall.They changed one eyesore for another and haslingden lost out. Shame on them her from here
  • Score: 1

1:16pm Sat 24 Nov 12

ianloveday says...

sick of hearing about haslingden baths now, get over it, if people are that bothered then go to the new and improved marl pits, haslingden was a dump anyways
sick of hearing about haslingden baths now, get over it, if people are that bothered then go to the new and improved marl pits, haslingden was a dump anyways ianloveday
  • Score: 0

6:25pm Sat 24 Nov 12

her from here says...

ianloveday wrote:
sick of hearing about haslingden baths now, get over it, if people are that bothered then go to the new and improved marl pits, haslingden was a dump anyways
On their way to Marl Pits when they change buses at Rawtenstall they can look at the tarmac that should have been their baths .dosn't seem fair somehow.
[quote][p][bold]ianloveday[/bold] wrote: sick of hearing about haslingden baths now, get over it, if people are that bothered then go to the new and improved marl pits, haslingden was a dump anyways[/p][/quote]On their way to Marl Pits when they change buses at Rawtenstall they can look at the tarmac that should have been their baths .dosn't seem fair somehow. her from here
  • Score: 1

8:13pm Sat 24 Nov 12

pwitch says...

Is the Marl Pits pool prepared to accept school children for lessons and disabled people and is it the right size for these requirements. I remember when we used to use Bacup Baths ( the Maden Public Baths) for lessons from our school all those years ago- Rossendale Council needs a kick up the *** as they do seem to make some very bad decisions. For instance why did they need to remove the banner advertising Winfields at the A56/A580 junction? Who did that harm?
Is the Marl Pits pool prepared to accept school children for lessons and disabled people and is it the right size for these requirements. I remember when we used to use Bacup Baths ( the Maden Public Baths) for lessons from our school all those years ago- Rossendale Council needs a kick up the *** as they do seem to make some very bad decisions. For instance why did they need to remove the banner advertising Winfields at the A56/A580 junction? Who did that harm? pwitch
  • Score: 1

8:33pm Sat 24 Nov 12

pdb951 says...

Try Whitworth baths. It is after all part of Rossedale.
Try Whitworth baths. It is after all part of Rossedale. pdb951
  • Score: 1

9:29am Sun 25 Nov 12

spendmymoneywisely says...

Just out of curiosity what sort of pay cut have the Councillors and the Executive level of the Council employees taken in the efforts to save money?. They are cutting staffing and hiving off work to the voluntary sector but still paying 'consultants' , spending phenomenal amounts on computer related matters and wasting money by creating an empty space which, by their own admission, won't be developed for some years. Why must the Leisure Trust save £200k surely any savings would be of value and I'm curious to know how the figure was arrived at. Incidentally I would happily support Whitworth Pool if its future could be guaranteed but I'm pretty certain that its subsidies will soon attract the attention of the Council and, in a few years we will have no swimming provision in the Valley at all. That's alright as we can travel to Rochdale, Bury & the Ribble Valley so Rossendale money will be spent outside of our 'home turf' and Rossendale can crumble into obscurity. That will save the Council worrying about it. It wouldn't surprise me if the Leisure Trust itself folds (after it has repaid the loan spent on the Valley Centre) but that's alright as whichever party is running the Council at the time will blame central government or its predecessors as that's all Councils do when things go wrong.
Just out of curiosity what sort of pay cut have the Councillors and the Executive level of the Council employees taken in the efforts to save money?. They are cutting staffing and hiving off work to the voluntary sector but still paying 'consultants' , spending phenomenal amounts on computer related matters and wasting money by creating an empty space which, by their own admission, won't be developed for some years. Why must the Leisure Trust save £200k surely any savings would be of value and I'm curious to know how the figure was arrived at. Incidentally I would happily support Whitworth Pool if its future could be guaranteed but I'm pretty certain that its subsidies will soon attract the attention of the Council and, in a few years we will have no swimming provision in the Valley at all. That's alright as we can travel to Rochdale, Bury & the Ribble Valley so Rossendale money will be spent outside of our 'home turf' and Rossendale can crumble into obscurity. That will save the Council worrying about it. It wouldn't surprise me if the Leisure Trust itself folds (after it has repaid the loan spent on the Valley Centre) but that's alright as whichever party is running the Council at the time will blame central government or its predecessors as that's all Councils do when things go wrong. spendmymoneywisely
  • Score: 0

10:27am Sun 25 Nov 12

gazzandste says...

Why not sell their transport company, its worth a million or so.
Why not sell their transport company, its worth a million or so. gazzandste
  • Score: -1

10:28am Sun 25 Nov 12

gazzandste says...

Why not sell their transport company, its worth a million or so.
Why not sell their transport company, its worth a million or so. gazzandste
  • Score: -1

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