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Swimming Pool Temperature Update

UK swimming pools face great difficulty post COVID-19 as increased energy prices threaten the worst spate of insolvencies in the sector’s history.

COVID-19 hit the leisure industry with particular force, closing many facilities in areas as close as North Devon and Cornwall. In all, about 200 swimming pools closed during the pandemic in England, meaning 23% of local authorities in England have a shortage of one swimming pool.

More recently, the Russian invasion of Ukraine and the subsequent rise in utility costs has greatly challenged leisure operators, particularly those with swimming pools, which are high users of gas and electricity.

Estimates suggest the cost of heating England’s swimming pools could rise to £1.25 billion this year, from £500 million in 2019. This means a cost increase of up to 150% for swimming pool providers.

In light of this, many swimming pools that have remained open have faced the difficult decision to reduce operating hours, increase membership and ‘pay as you go’ prices and reduce water temperatures in order to remain financially viable.

Despite rising energy costs, LED Community Leisure has worked incredibly hard to not only ensure our leisure centres and swimming pools can safely remain open and deliver the highest possible standard of customer care, but also to reinvest in our facilities and, as a not-for-profit community leisure trust, continue to deliver our outreach programmes that support our local communities.

Examples of our commitment to reinvestment include the refurbishment of Honiton Swimming Pool changing rooms and makeover of Sidmouth Swimming Pool changing rooms (funded by East Devon District Council) and a new Coastline Café at Exmouth Leisure Centre.

We are also working closely with the Council to introduce energy-saving initiatives, such as solar panels and air-source heat pumps, to remove our swimming pools reliance on gas heating and to supplement the energy conservation measures already in place, whilst maintaining pool temperatures within industry guidelines.

We have added further value to our memberships by adding over 1,000 virtual workouts a week to the LED app, as well as offering generous discounts for activities and food and drink at Ocean and Exmouth Pavilion.

From January 2023 LED members will no longer have access to a swimming only membership in favour of a better value membership that offers the choice of either access to Gym or Group exercise classes for just an extra £5 a month. Discounts also remain available for students and those eligible for a Passport to Leisure.

Katy Yardley, group Aquatic lead, said:

“LED Community Leisure would like to assure all members that despite the rising utility costs we are maintaining our pool temperatures between 29.5 and 30 degrees. These temperatures are well within industry guidelines and are safe for swimmers of all ages, including infants as young as 4 months old.

This may occasionally vary by up to 0.5 degrees for short periods of time during essential pool maintenance tasks.

Our swimming pool temperatures have not changed and we currently have no plans to reduce the temperature of our swimming pools.

Should you have any queries regarding swimming pool temperature, or any other aspect of our facilities or activities, please speak to a member of the management team on your next visit.”

LED Community Leisure would like to thank you for your continued support and look forward to supporting your health and wellbeing needs for the future.

Kind Regards,

LED Community Leisure Ltd

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