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Covid close contacts could have impact on Dunmanway pool’s opening hours

January 18th, 2022 11:45 AM

By Kieran O'Mahony

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WHILE interviews for pool assistants at Dunmanway Municipal Pool are expected to take place very soon, Council officials have warned that the issue of people being close contacts could potentially have an effect on the opening hours at the facility.

The issue of the lack of staff at West Cork’s only public swimming pool was raised at last week’s meeting of the West Cork Municipal District when Cllr Declan Hurley (Ind) queried the recruitment process that commenced towards the end of last year.

Senior executive officer Mac Dara O h-Icí said that Cork County Council recently ran two recruitment campaigns to hire staff at the pool, something which had been highlighted by councillors at several meetings.

‘We got responses to them and are in the process of organising interviews for them hopefully in the short term and we will inform members when we have the staff in place,’ he said.

‘With the current Covid numbers going up we are at the mercy of people being close contacts, and there’s a possibility this will have an impact on the pool and other front facing services.’

Both Cllr Hurley and Cllr Deirdre Kelly (FF) had previously raised the issue of staffing and opening hours at the multi-million euro swimming pool, as it was operating at reduced opening hours and was closed on some days.

They were told by Council officials that five of the eight full-time staff were not available because they were availing of ‘normal but in some cases extended leave arrangements.’

The pool is open Tuesday to Saturday from 11am to 5.40pm  and the facility operates on the basis of an Advanced Booking System at present, but walk-ins can be accommodated subject to availability.

A Council spokesperson said there are current proposals to extend the opening hours, subject to staff recruitment.

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