- Primary Phone Number:
- 01984 624720
- Secondary Phone Number:
- 07764 571018
- The Recreation Ground,
Wivey Pool, Wiveliscombe Community Swimming Pool Club
celebrates it's 90th birthday on the 4th August 2017
Our Season for 2017 runs from the 8th May to the 10th September.#
For full details see www.wiveypool.org or www.facebook.com/wiveypoolofficial/
Morning Lane Swims Daily 07.00 - 09.00
Term Time Lunchtime Lane Swims 12.30 - 14.00
Term Time Family Swim 14.00 - 17.30
Weekends and Holidays Member only Swim 11.00 - 12.30 (there may be one lane in)
Weekends and Holidays General Family Swim 12.30 - 17.00
Weekday Evening Lane Swim 19.00 - 20.00
On Thursday the 4th August 1927, with 200 people assembled, the 90ft by 30ft concreted pool, with dressing cubicles, a diving spring board and a high platform diving platform 12 ft 6 inches, was opened.
Initially costing £778, the cold water pool started life with a four inch pipe bringing water in at the shallow end from the reservoirs at Withycombe and Coate and an outlet pipe at the deep end, although this meant a continuous flow of water it didn’t take long to become green and murky. It was said that it would have not have been known if anyone had drowned until there was a roll call.
There were 130 season ticket holders in the first year.The first caretaker was paid 25 shillings a week (approx £70 in today’s money), with a season ticket costing a guinea (£1 1s) (approx. £59 in today’s money) Swimming was not allowed on a Sunday morning nor in the evening at the time of church services.
The Wiveliscombe and District Swimming Clubs first season, in 1931, had a membership of 50.
The badge for the club comprised of a black cloth badge with the initials WSC embroidered in green
In 1938, due to high levels of bacteria after a sanitary inspector’s tests, the pool was first chlorinated.
In July,1967, the pool was closed due to improvements required to the pump plant at an estimated cost of £3,000. A plant house was built and the pool reopened on 15th August 1968.
In 1977 after several difficult years it was closed again but with the determination of a few, involvement of the community and a donation received, the Wiveliscombe Community Swimming Pool Club was formed.
In 1982 a sponsored swim helped to raise money for new pumps. In 1991 a decision was made to raise funds for the water heating system with a target of £7,000. Events to raise the funds included a Clay shoot and a race night. Enough had been raised and donated to lay in a gas pipe, build the boiler room and purchase a burner which meant in May 1992 when the pool opened for the season the water was heated. The fund raising events were repeated the follow year to pay the gas bill!!
Before the season opened in 2015 the back was extended with a concrete decking to allow more space and in July the same year, a new motorised cover was installed.
90 years on, the pool is almost unrecognisable. The yearly running costs are approx. £45,000, 28 degree heated water, Pumps, filters, dosing systems and other necessary equipment costing over £70,000 to bring it up to date and a continual struggle to keep it operational and complying with ever changing regulations.
The Pool is run by a voluntary committee of 14, who give their time to steer the pool into the future, turning it into a structured organisation. Volunteers give hours of their time, from committee members organising the shop, plant room, health and safety and much more, to the parents who help whilst their children swim.
The Trustees are always looking for new people, especially those who have experience in Leisure, legal, IT, HR to join the committee and others to help the 10 or 12 family swim time volunteers with the gate and shop. All help is gratefully received.
For the past few years swimmers of all ages have recorded their lengths, which have been used for the aim of 'swimming to Australia' by the 90th Birthday. This was achieved by the beginning of last season, so the swim continued down to the Gold Coast, with the intention of heading 'home'. On the 21st June, it was noted that 1,000,000 recorded lengths had been swum in the pool.
Each year the Pool seems to get more popular, with spells of hot weather this is more obvious, when there are people queueing at the gate to have a wonderful cooling dip.
Who would have thought 90 years ago we would still have this wonderful facility, especially when so many have had to close over the years. With luck, the community will still be enjoying ‘Wivey Pool’ in 90 years time.