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Massive investment in swimming in Hambleton

Published on Tuesday, 11th July 2017

swim scheme cash

Swimming in Hambleton’s four leisure centres has been given a massive boost – with a £274,525 national lottery grant from Sport England announced this week.

The district council is one of 12 authorities across the country to receive funding from the ‘Swim Local’ pilot scheme which aims to promote and increase participation in swimming.

The year long project – which has been formulated following customer research - will be used for targeted work including a team of swim activators, new products and programmes, enhanced swimming technology and improvements to the customer experience at the pools in Northallerton, Thirsk, Bedale and Stokesley.   And the take up campaign will extend into Easingwold too.

“We are delighted to have been chosen as one of these 12 pilots – it is testament to our

determination to drive swimming forward across Hambleton, “ said Councillor Bridget Fortune, Cabinet Portfolio Holder for Leisure.

“I want to say a big thankyou to Sport England and the national lottery for giving us this opportunity and look forward to seeing our residents reap the rewards.

“Participation rates for swimming have declined over the last few years and the Swim Local Pilots will test solutions to rectify this by improving the customer experience and increase the take up.

“In the last year there were around 170,000 swims in our pools – we want to see that increase significantly as a result of this scheme.”

She said that four key groups of people will be concentrated on – families; women and girls; men over 40; and the older generation – with more information on the detail of the scheme announced in September.

Lisa O’Keefe, Sport England’s Director of Insight, said: “Sport England is proud to be providing funding and support to Hambleton District Council to help more people get active through swimming. A lot of research has gone into the development of the Swim Local projects to make sure we’re giving the local community what they want and need.

“We know swimming is one of the ways many people prefer to get active. At Sport England we want everyone to enjoy the benefits that exercise brings, and hope people in the Hambleton district take advantage of the exciting new swimming opportunities in the area.”

  • Cllr Fortune is pictured at one of her swimming lessons with swim teacher, Matthew Sherwood – she has recently taken to the water to improve her technique and confidence and has already gone from only swimming breadths to now completing lengths of the pool.