Pool hours cash cut

Pontefract swimming pool.
Pontefract swimming pool.

COST-CUTTING plans which could see swimming pools in the Five Towns close one day a week have been revealed by council chiefs.

Wakefield Council is asking residents for their views on two proposals to change the opening hours at some of the district’s baths from April 2 as it tries to slash £22m from its budget.

One option would see Castleford, Featherstone, Pontefract and Normanton pools close one day a week on different days. Minsthorpe pool would reduce its opening hours on a Sunday and reduce the availability of the learner pool on three days during the week.

The second suggestion would see Castleford, Featherstone, Pontefract, Minsthorpe and Normanton swimming pools open one hour earlier and close at 9.30pm on weekdays – but close early in the afternoon on a Sunday.

Minsthorpe pool would also reduce the availability of its learner pool on three days during the week.

Council bosses are launching a consultation into the plans, which would save the authority £100,000.

Coun David Dagger, council cabinet member for culture, sport and libraries, said: “We have a tough challenge to make considerable savings for the year ahead. By making changes to opening hours of some of our swimming pools we can keep all our leisure centres open and still offer an excellent service.

“We are asking you choose one of the options. Your views matter to us and I encourage everyone to take part in this consultation.” Residents can give their views by visiting www.wakefield.gov.uk/poolcon sultation or picking up a form from a council sports centre.

They can also write, free of charge, to Leisure Centre Consultation, Room Eight, Town Hall, FREEPOST NEA5394, Wakefield WF1 2BR, The closing date for the consultation is March 18.