Petition seeks pool to be open longer

October 18th, 2021 11:40 AM

By Kieran O'Mahony

The pool in Dunmanway has opening hours that don’t suit everyone, locals have said.

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AN online petition calling for the increase in the opening hours of Dunmanway Swimming Pool and gym is already gaining momentum with over 600 people having signed it since last weekend.

The petition was started by ‘Dunmanway Residents for Change’ on who stated that many people are unable to avail of the facility as the opening hours are so limited. ‘Currently the sessions only operate from Tuesday to Saturday on the hour, from 11am to 5pm. This prevents most people from being able to attend,’ they state.

‘Also swimming lessons have resumed in a number of other public swimming pools in the country, but not Dunmanway.’ The group is asking that the opening house be extended to seven days a week from 7am to 10pm, as they had been previously, with lessons and classes resumed.

‘The showers could also be reopened, with such high vaccination numbers now achieved among the public.’

One signee of the petition said that the pool is a ‘vital asset for the community and evening sessions have always been key to its role’, while another signee said that that the ‘current hours exclude the majority of the population from attending.’

At a Council meeting last week, councillors voiced their frustration and annoyance  with the fact that the pool is closed on Sundays and Mondays, despite other public pools in the county operating at full capacity. One councillor even said it was an ‘absolute joke’ that a state-of-the-art facility was running at almost half capacity, while they also heard that families are being forced to travel to Kealkil to avail of swimming lessons.

Cllr Paul Hayes (Ind) this week called on the Council to allocate the required resources, both staff and financial, to allow for the extended opening hours and have the facilities available to people before and after work, during the week.

Council officials said that a plan is currently being put in place to ensure opening hours can be extended and a recruitment campaign to hire part-time pool assistants for the Dunmanway Pool is also currently underway.

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