Swimmers have welcomed a temporary Olympic Legacy pool which opened in Bridlington after Leisure World closed for a £20 million revamp.
Bridlington Sports Centre in Gypsey Road welcomed in the first swimmers to use the 25 metre pool on Monday 13 January.
The replacement pool, used by athletes for warming-up and training during the 2012 Olympic Games, is provided by East Riding of Yorkshire Council in conjunction with Sport England and Total Swimming.
Adam Mainprize, Sports Centre manager, said the pool was so popular when it opened on Monday that extra staff had to be called in to help cope with demand.
He 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. It has a constant depth of 1.2 metres which Mr Mainprize believes will boost the confidence and safety of users. In addition two disused squash courts have been transformed into a gym with 35 pieces of gym equipment moved into the space.
Councillor 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.”
Enjoying the new facilities was Gloria Wood, 77, of Haywood Avenue who said: “It is beautiful. I wouldn’t mind winning the lottery and having one of them! We have been coming swimming for about nine years and if this temporary pool wasn’t here I would have just sat at home and vegetated.”
Her husband, Roland Wood, 78, said: “Everything they have done is brilliant, they have done a fantastic job.”
Julie Jones, 53, of Bridlington, said: “The new pool is really nice. There are no bad points about it. We have all come from Leisure World there is different facilities but everyone is mixing and integrating.”
Councillor Stephen Parnaby OBE, leader of East Riding of Yorkshire Council, said: “The redevelopment of Leisure World forms part of the council’s £123 million capital investment programme for 2014-15 and highlights this authority’s commitment to providing residents in Bridlington with state-of-the-art facilities for years to come.
“A key part of the plans was to secure temporary swimming provision so that no service was lost while the new multipurpose leisure facility is constructed and we are delighted to have arranged this in partnership with Sport England and Total Swimming.
“The building of a new leisure facility will provide a timely boost to the local economy and safeguard jobs in the construction industry as well as providing Bridlington’s residents with a facility that will be at the forefront of leisure venues in the country.”
The new Leisure World facility, to be constructed by BAM, is expected to open in 2015. It will boast a range of facilities including a 25 metre six-lane pool, 70-station fitness suite and a six-court sports hall.