Select Committee on Culture, Media and Sport Appendices to the Minutes of Evidence


Memorandum submitted by the Immediate Past President of the Amateur Swimming Association Midland District

  I should like to bring to your attention these facts.

  1.  Local authorities provide the majority of public swimming pools where club members may train. Local authorities must be given "ring-fenced" funding for their pools, together with compulsory maintenance contracts and the payment of local swimming development officers. Pools in their care are a service to the community, not a source of income for council services/salaries elsewhere within the Authority. Where clubs are being continually priced out of their pools (as in Luton—three rises in 2001-02), there is no chance for swimmers to receive sufficient and appropriately coached training to reach their potential and perhaps move on to "centres of excellence".

  2.  Swimmers are trained and transported at cost to parents. Any proposed levies on clubs being mooted at the moment will spell the dealth knell of our sport as a competitive sport. Such rises will restrict adults and children who swim for reasons of health and recreation (at a saving to Health Service budgets).

  3.  The most important reason for keeping pools open, for building new pools where competition is built in to the specification and for encouraging maximum participation in this the most healthy of sports is the contribution to character-building:- perseverance, integrity, grit and self-reliance in competitive club members in all four disciplines of our sport. We cater for all ages—but our youngsters are the fabric on which the well-being of this nation is built.

27 November 2001

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