Fears club membership could take a dive

Fears club membership could take a dive

Fears club membership could take a dive

First published in Your Views

Walthamstow Pool and Track was built nearly 50 years ago.

It was to provide a comprehensive facility in the middle of the new borough, easy to get to for everyone.

It was a fun place to go, with a 5m platform we used to jump off when we were brave enough.
My daughter learned to swim there. Now she is in the Waltham Forest Diving Club, which also uses Waltham Forest Pool and Track.

Although it still seems useable, we were very pleased to hear that the leisure centre is being replaced with a new facility. We were most unhappy to hear though that the new pool won’t retain a 5m diving platform.

Full use is made of the 1m and 3m boards and the 5m platform – the three are a minimum requirement for stamina building, training and competitions.

The club has been told that to benefit from full training facilities in the future, it will have to use the London Aquatics Centre at the Olympic site down in Stratford.

There are no direct trains to the Aquatics Centre. There is one bus, but it stops short, requiring a long walk through Westfield shopping centre and doesn’t run from all parts of the borough.

In addition, fees will increase – my daughter’s fees have doubled, as the club is using the centre on a temporary basis – and if parents drive there, the parking is difficult and pricey.

Spending an hour or so getting to Stratford and then an hour back is less than ideal and so together this all means Waltham Forest Diving Club could gradually migrate.

It could become a misnomer or the club could die altogether.

It is far more attractive on a busy work and school night to make a short journey by car to Waltham Forest Pool and Track.

There is also the issue of a lack of consultation, which I have to say is appalling.

The club – and the Waltham Forest Gators Swimming Club and the scuba club – have been using the Pool and Track for more than 40 years, paying for the privilege.

The council has a statutory duty to consult them.

Issues such as the requirement for a 5m platform could have been discussed. Instead, the diving club has been cursorily informed of plans.

There is a campaign to keep the 5m platform at the pool and track. I fully support the campaign and ask others to do so.

The Aquatics Centre is a wonderful facility and the diving club will enjoy using it while Waltham Forest Pool and Track is being rebuilt (transport issues aside).

But an accessible, viable club with boards and platforms up to and including 5m is needed in the heart of the borough, rather than an all-or-nothing scenario outside.

Lloyd Lewzey,
Brunswick Street,
Walthamstow.

Comments (4)

Please log in to enable comment sorting

8:05pm Thu 29 May 14

ICapesy says...

The area of Newham around the Olympic Park is zoned for huge housing developments. There are adverts for the flats and houses right outside the Newham Aqua Centre . In ten years time the Aqua Centre will be the leisure facility for a vastly increased Newham population. Waltham Forest residents in the north and centre of our borough especially will not be able to access these facilities when the Newham user population rises to projected levels in the ongoing regeneration of the Olympic park area.

Despite this, Waltham Forest council and GLL are busily throwing away the amazing swimming and diving facility that local Waltham Forest residents have enjoyed using at the Pool and Track since 1966. This is a totally mis-guided and locally unconsulted rebuild which is greatly reducing and even destroying a much loved and well used iconic leisure amenity that attracts people from near and far.

Many of us have submitted objections to the council planning department on the basis of the lack of MANDATORY consultation of local stakeholder users. We await their response. The reference is 2014/0845 if anybody wishes to add their objections on the council planning website.

There is an online petition at:-

http://www.gopetitio
n.com/petitions/save
-the-5-metre-diving-
board-at-walthamstow
-pool-and-track/sign
.html

We have 583 at the moment but we need as many as we can get. Please help force this inadequate scheme back to the mandatory local consultation phase.
The area of Newham around the Olympic Park is zoned for huge housing developments. There are adverts for the flats and houses right outside the Newham Aqua Centre . In ten years time the Aqua Centre will be the leisure facility for a vastly increased Newham population. Waltham Forest residents in the north and centre of our borough especially will not be able to access these facilities when the Newham user population rises to projected levels in the ongoing regeneration of the Olympic park area. Despite this, Waltham Forest council and GLL are busily throwing away the amazing swimming and diving facility that local Waltham Forest residents have enjoyed using at the Pool and Track since 1966. This is a totally mis-guided and locally unconsulted rebuild which is greatly reducing and even destroying a much loved and well used iconic leisure amenity that attracts people from near and far. Many of us have submitted objections to the council planning department on the basis of the lack of MANDATORY consultation of local stakeholder users. We await their response. The reference is 2014/0845 if anybody wishes to add their objections on the council planning website. There is an online petition at:- http://www.gopetitio n.com/petitions/save -the-5-metre-diving- board-at-walthamstow -pool-and-track/sign .html We have 583 at the moment but we need as many as we can get. Please help force this inadequate scheme back to the mandatory local consultation phase. ICapesy
  • Score: 2

12:22pm Sat 31 May 14

rachelbettelley@hotmail.com says...

I am at a loss to understand why an Olympic Borough has decided not to spend any money out of the millions of pounds refurbishment to reinstate what facilities we already have. My daughter waited a year to be able to join the diving club and now we have moved to the aquacentre in Stratford the journey is long especially when this is an after school activity,the expense of petrol and parking makes it very difficult when I can wal to pool and track. The council is being shortsighted and underhand not consulting stakeholders. WFDC will not be ignored. Now we are at Aqua centre we are not given exclusive use of dive pit which I thought we paid for. We now have groups of adults who are not supervised properly and interfered with our children diving safely, our coach ended up coaching the adults off the boards in order to let our children dive safely. The Aqua Centre coach clearly had no control over 11 adults as she was always in conversation with poolside students and not witnessing the chaos her students were causing. I fel Aqua Cdntre are gently pushing us out and even at this early stage the facility there is short staffed the manager was on lifeguard duty. This week there was no lifeguard.
I would dearly love to return to pool and track and a new diving facility but our council have no ambition and the Olympic Legacy officially ends at their shortsighted doorstep.
I am at a loss to understand why an Olympic Borough has decided not to spend any money out of the millions of pounds refurbishment to reinstate what facilities we already have. My daughter waited a year to be able to join the diving club and now we have moved to the aquacentre in Stratford the journey is long especially when this is an after school activity,the expense of petrol and parking makes it very difficult when I can wal to pool and track. The council is being shortsighted and underhand not consulting stakeholders. WFDC will not be ignored. Now we are at Aqua centre we are not given exclusive use of dive pit which I thought we paid for. We now have groups of adults who are not supervised properly and interfered with our children diving safely, our coach ended up coaching the adults off the boards in order to let our children dive safely. The Aqua Centre coach clearly had no control over 11 adults as she was always in conversation with poolside students and not witnessing the chaos her students were causing. I fel Aqua Cdntre are gently pushing us out and even at this early stage the facility there is short staffed the manager was on lifeguard duty. This week there was no lifeguard. I would dearly love to return to pool and track and a new diving facility but our council have no ambition and the Olympic Legacy officially ends at their shortsighted doorstep. rachelbettelley@hotmail.com
  • Score: 2

8:31pm Sat 31 May 14

ICapesy says...

Councillor Khan and his supporters keep saying nobody uses the 5m diving board apart from jumping off it.

Not true. I have photos going back 4+ years, date and time stamped, of divers in both club and Sunday joint public / club session diving (not jumping!) off the 5m platform – often spectacularly so. The most recent images are from early May 2014 involving adult as well as club divers.

I and many others would like Cllr Khan, and the head of Waltham Forest Leisure Services to very clearly state just what is wrong with public session youth using the 5m platform for fun? The high platform attracts young people to do some form of sport and exercise and very much dovetails with government strategy to encourage a more active and healthy lifestyle in the general population.

Cllr Khan and co totally ignore the recent comments from Peter Waterfield our locally born Olympic and Commonwealth multiple medal winner who started off on the Pool and Track 5m platform. In the Waltham Forest Guardian paper edition of May 22nd and in an extended online interview he has very eloquently expressed what the current facilty meant to him as a young man growing up in Waltham Forest. He quite clearly deplores both the decision to not include a 5m in the rebuild plan and the exclusion of all local users from any prior consultation.

Pete's interview is here http://www.guardian-
series.co.uk/news/wf
news/11224291.Olympi
an_joins_calls_to_sa
ve_diving_board__ste
pping_stone__to_succ
ess/ if you missed it.

Diving most definitely keeps teenagers / young men and women meaningfully occupied and has very real social cohesion benefits. Young people of all economic, ethnic and religious backgrounds share a fun and mutually rewarding activity where they can be seen admiring each others prowess and bravado. They communicate in a way they they do not when swimming up and down in lanes. Open public diving sessions are a very effective way to help break down social barriers.

In a borough as diverse as Waltham Forest it is the height of short sighted folly to sacrifice a facility such as the 5m diving board and separate diving pit when it draws together such a wide range of young people in a mutually rewarding and social manner.

Cllr Khan should get himself down to a public session and tell the kids and young people to their face that he doesn't value the facility and is taking it away from them.
Councillor Khan and his supporters keep saying nobody uses the 5m diving board apart from jumping off it. Not true. I have photos going back 4+ years, date and time stamped, of divers in both club and Sunday joint public / club session diving (not jumping!) off the 5m platform – often spectacularly so. The most recent images are from early May 2014 involving adult as well as club divers. I and many others would like Cllr Khan, and the head of Waltham Forest Leisure Services to very clearly state just what is wrong with public session youth using the 5m platform for fun? The high platform attracts young people to do some form of sport and exercise and very much dovetails with government strategy to encourage a more active and healthy lifestyle in the general population. Cllr Khan and co totally ignore the recent comments from Peter Waterfield our locally born Olympic and Commonwealth multiple medal winner who started off on the Pool and Track 5m platform. In the Waltham Forest Guardian paper edition of May 22nd and in an extended online interview he has very eloquently expressed what the current facilty meant to him as a young man growing up in Waltham Forest. He quite clearly deplores both the decision to not include a 5m in the rebuild plan and the exclusion of all local users from any prior consultation. Pete's interview is here http://www.guardian- series.co.uk/news/wf news/11224291.Olympi an_joins_calls_to_sa ve_diving_board__ste pping_stone__to_succ ess/ if you missed it. Diving most definitely keeps teenagers / young men and women meaningfully occupied and has very real social cohesion benefits. Young people of all economic, ethnic and religious backgrounds share a fun and mutually rewarding activity where they can be seen admiring each others prowess and bravado. They communicate in a way they they do not when swimming up and down in lanes. Open public diving sessions are a very effective way to help break down social barriers. In a borough as diverse as Waltham Forest it is the height of short sighted folly to sacrifice a facility such as the 5m diving board and separate diving pit when it draws together such a wide range of young people in a mutually rewarding and social manner. Cllr Khan should get himself down to a public session and tell the kids and young people to their face that he doesn't value the facility and is taking it away from them. ICapesy
  • Score: 3

10:44pm Sat 31 May 14

KTaylorE4 says...

My six year old son joined Waltham Forest Diving Club in January. He loves it. He isn't ambitious; he's not out to become Tom Daley - right now he just loves to jump from great heights. And that is fine with WFDC. This is a really friendly club. The coaches smile (something which doesn't happen a lot at the other sports club my children attend) and they have excellent relationships with the children. WFDC is not a pushy club but enables children of all abilities to participate as much as they are comfortable doing. The ethos really is for the children to have a good time and a safe time. We are fortunate in LBWF to have the club and to lose the 5m platform would have a devastating impact on the club and upon the local community.
My six year old son joined Waltham Forest Diving Club in January. He loves it. He isn't ambitious; he's not out to become Tom Daley - right now he just loves to jump from great heights. And that is fine with WFDC. This is a really friendly club. The coaches smile (something which doesn't happen a lot at the other sports club my children attend) and they have excellent relationships with the children. WFDC is not a pushy club but enables children of all abilities to participate as much as they are comfortable doing. The ethos really is for the children to have a good time and a safe time. We are fortunate in LBWF to have the club and to lose the 5m platform would have a devastating impact on the club and upon the local community. KTaylorE4
  • Score: 1

Comments are closed on this article.

Send us your news, pictures and videos

Most read stories

Local Info

Enter your postcode, town or place name

About cookies

We want you to enjoy your visit to our website. That's why we use cookies to enhance your experience. By staying on our website you agree to our use of cookies. Find out more about the cookies we use.

I agree