21/12/2023 - Permalink

News from our partners: Trustees make pool appeal for 50th anniversary refurbishment

Related topics: Leisure, culture and heritage / Partner organisations
A swimming pool with a colourful wall in the background

The swimming pool at SpArC in Bishop’s Castle

The Trustees of SpArC at Bishop’s Castle’s have launched a £250,000 appeal for the refurbishment of the 50-year-old swimming pool at the Shropshire Council owned centre.

The goal is to replace the pool’s tank with a new steel structure that will be more resilient and energy efficient in the future.

Trustee Jean Shirley said:-

“SpArC’s swimming pool will celebrate its 50th birthday in 2024, and while it has served the community well, over the years, its lining is unlikely to outlive the year. Our aim is to replace it with an insulated steel tank to reduce water volume and heating costs in order for it to be more sustainable, both environmentally and financially. We also plan, through a ramp or steps, to widen access for disabled and elderly people.

“We are well aware that many people may be short of money, but we are starting with £70,000 already collected and our target is, by the end of 2024, to have a further £180,000.

“We really hope people will support us and we are encouraging them to take part in a number of fun ways, from swimming challenges, collections, fundraisers and simply by making a donation.”

Robert Macey, Shropshire Council Cabinet member for culture and digital, added:-

“The trust has a proven track record in fundraising and adding to what’s on offer in the centre and I am delighted the fundraising focus has turned to improving both the pool and its energy efficiency.

“Shropshire Council has committed £190,000 to the centre’s maintenance, including pool changing rooms and showers and pool plant upgrading and is actively exploring funding to improve the plant’s energy efficiency, to replace boilers with air source heat pumps and to install additional solar panels.”

The trust suggests people join the fundraising campaign by:

Community activities from people who have a bit of spare time:

  • Host/organise a fundraising event – coffee morning, quiz, tabletop sale, sponsored silence; tractor run
  • join the small fundraising group and help run events – colour run, prize bingo, plant stall
  • Grow/divide plants now for our annual plant stall
  • Set up a collection point for unused foreign currency

Grant applications

  • The Trust would appreciate help in filling the forms.

Financial donations from people who are able to contribute in any of the following ways:

  • make a one-off donation
  • set up a regular monthly standing order
  • join the monthly prize draw for £8 per month, which shares out monthly prizes to the lucky winners
  • drop any loose change into one of the collection tins around town
  • donate raffle and bingo prizes to be used throughout the year
  • look out for a 50p collection over 50 days challenge
  • become a friend of SpArC Theatre
  • sponsor activities at the Centre – lifeguard training, printing etc

How to make a donation:

  • Leave a cheque at Enterprise House made payable to Sport & Arts in the Community (SPARC) SW Shropshire FAO Graham Hemmings
  • Make a BACS payment to the SPARC account above: Sort Code 40-52-40; A/c No 00030653

Jean added: “Our ‘everyone swims 50’ event was a great success. The swimmers who took part swam an average of 75 lengths in 50 minutes, with three doing 100 lengths and one 120. Given that two of these swimmers are in their 70s, this was no mean feat and the joint swimmer income to date is £3,300.

“I also want to thank everyone who supported our Christmas Prize Bingo, whether they helped set up and tidy away or took part in the games. We raised a massive total – £1,1950.”

To volunteer with the appeal please email jeanshirley@btinternet.com or ruthmhoughton55@gmail.com