Over the past 12 months we have worked with Total Swimming to design and build the UK’s first semi-permanent swimming pool building. The temporary pool, based at Bridlington Leisure World, and used by everyone from local school children to athletes training for the next Olympics, has been put in place while the existing facility goes under a major refurbishment.
Working closely with Total Swimming and Sport England throughout, we built a temporary building of around 500 square metres that houses the pool, supplied by Sport England, which is one of the ex-Olympic ‘Legacy’ training pools located at the Eton Manor site on Queen Elizabeth Park whilst the London 2012 games were taking place.
Bridlington Leisure World complex closed in January for a £20million redevelopment programme that will take place over the next two years. The result will be an Olympic size training pool, a fun pool with water slides, and a health suite.
Scott Jameson, Managing Director of Spaciotempo, explains: “East Riding Council didn’t want to leave its residents without a swimming pool for two years as they know that the detrimental effect this can have on local children learning to swim, people’s fitness and rehabilitation etc. For some swimming is the only way they like to exercise and the Council didn’t want them to lose that physical and social part of their lifestyle.”
The temporary pool is sited at the rear of Bridlington Leisure World, which offers basketball, handball and squash courts, as well as a gym and a gym class studio. A covered building linking directly into the sports hall seamlessly joins the two facilities.
“This stretches the standard use of our type of building to a new frontier,” Scott added. “We have worked on feasibility studies with mechanical and electrical designers as well as pool engineers for over 18 months to ensure the project doesn’t feel temporary at all. It’s fully heated and offers a structurally sound and temperature controlled environment for swimmers. There’s also a secure area outside of the building where Total Swimming manages the water treatment and pump room.
The pool was opened at the end of January by Olympic swimming bronze medalist Joanne Jackson and was so popular when it opened that extra staff had to be called in to help cope with demand.
Adam Mainprize, Bridlington Leisure World Manager, said: “We have had a fantastic response from people who say the pool is absolutely brilliant and not what they expected. The engineering that has gone into the swimming pool is phenomenal. It is something that when it does leave us will be a shame, but we have got to think about the new facility.”
The pool took four-and-a-half months to build and will remain in place until Leisure World re-opens in 2015.
Councilor Richard Burton, portfolio holder for civic wellbeing and culture at East Riding of Yorkshire Council said: “It is an important part of what we do. It is important that we maintain the facility. The gym is very well used and membership is very strong. The way the space has been utilised is amazing.
“It is a great facility. It’s a temporary pool but it’s a very rigid structure. I think it will serve the residents really well while we invest in Leisure World.”