Supplementary memorandum submitted by
THE SPORT OF SWIMMING
Thank you for your letter of 4 December, seeking
further comment on the issue of the extent to which swimming pools
have suffered disproportionately in relation to other facilities
from local authority spending cuts.
I assume that the Committee refers to the conclusion
in my evidence which states:
"Collectively historic swimming pools represent
a community resource and national heritage asset of enormous value.
Like other civil buildings and spaces, swimming pools are an integral
part of civilised and `liveable' cities. And yet these historic
buildings form part of a broad picture of historic community facilities
under threat. Public Park Assessment, a report jointly
published by English Heritage and others in May 2001 demonstrates
the serious decline of England's urban parks resulting from years
of under-investment. The report found that, like swimming pools,
parks of historic interest have disproportionately suffered from
local authority spending cuts, resulting in widespread loss of
The point we are making is about the relative
vulnerability of pools of particular architectural or historic
interest to local authority cuts, not swimming pools per se.
The point is based on the broad evidence we have drawn together
to date for the purposes of presenting evidence to the Committee,
particularly in relation to those eleven pools already included
on our Register of Buildings at Risk, or likely to be included
in the future (see Appendix 2 of our evidence). As we have already
stressed, such evidence, although relevant, provides an incomplete
picture, given that we are not generally involved in grade II
listed pools outside London, but only those listed at grade I
or II*. A detailed survey of the state of all 79 listed swimming
pools in England would be of considerable benefit to securing
the fullest and clearest understanding of the extent and nature
of the problem, but would require the co-operation of the relevant
local planning authorities to be effective.
I trust that this clarifies the position.