Memorandum submitted by Mr Alan Phillips
As a past president of the Northamptonshire
Amateur Swimming Association I would like to make the following
comments on swimming in this area.
Historically, swimming facilities in this rural
area have been provided by the local councils for the recreational
benefit of their local constituents. Whilst this was extremely
laudable and appropriate for the pre second world war conditions
I suggest that with both the Government and residents pressure
on Council tax nowadays this method is no longer appropriate for
this day and age. It thus becomes necessary for people to do some
lateral thinking and come up with alternative methods of funding
the urgently required swimming facilities in this area.
Over the past two or three decades we have built
leisure and fun pools which cater for the recreational use of
water, but we have not provided any facilities for the swimmer
who wishes to swim for health, the swimmer who wishes to swim
for fitness or the swimmer who wishes to swim in a structured
environment. We also do not provide any reasonable facilities
for the clubs who provide the youth of this county with the opportunity
to achieve their potential in the sport of swimming.
Currently we have one pool in the Countyat
Corbywhich is capable of holding championships, and the
only reason that this is possible is that the county amateur swimming
association together with the county swimming clubs and, in conjunction
with the lottery, funded and provided the necessary facilities.
Unfortunately the geographic position of Corby
is not helpful for access for the rest of the County in that Corby
is 25 miles from the County town of Northampton and 40 miles from
One alternative that we in the county are investigating
and pursuing is that of linking up with a higher education establishment
namely University College Northampton, a solution which would
provide the answer to a number of the perceived problems.
University College Northampton have agreed that
they would provide the ground on which to build a competition-sized
pool the college would also provide the infrastructure needed
to operate such a facility. The country association together with
its member clubs would then provide the user base upon a viable
financial model could and has been constructed.
This proposed partnership would provide, in
a viable competition pool capable
of staging major championships.
by co-operating with a major swimming
club (Northampton S.C.) access to professional swimming coaching
opportunities for structured swimming
at reasonable hours for health from fitness purposes
educational opportunities for swimmers
which would be based on the very successful American model
opportunities for sports science
students to undertake practical research.
The only problem remaining is how do we raise
the £6 million of construction costs.
Thanking you for the opportunity to make the
27 November 2001