Moseley Shoals statement

We’ve been in touch with many people inquiring when Moseley Road Baths will reopen, really highlighting to us the need for it to open as soon as possible. Moseley Shoals have been using the Pool for group swim sessions for years, and have put their case to the Council as part of the ‘Business Case’ for the work on the pool to be commenced. I’ve copied in their statement here.

STATEMENT IN SUPPORT OF BUSINESS CASE – MOSELEY ROAD POOL

Moseley Shoals Swim Club (based at Moseley Road Pool)

We are a community swimming club, dedicated to lesbian, gay and bisexual swimmers. We formed at Moseley Road Pool in 2000, and we have hired the pool as a group for ten years. We are the largest local LGB sporting and social group in the Midlands, and one of only a few similar national groups. We have steadily built our group to achieve national and international recognition. We have developed coaching sessions and water polo at Moseley Road.

We have been able to build our club at Moseley Road Pool, through support from the local LGBT Community Trust and the pool staff and managers. We have developed sufficiently to hire the pool three times a week and organise a considerable social element to our club. We would be unlikely to be able to book these sessions at any other local pool at suitable times. In 2005 we were forced to move to Sparkhill Pool, and this disruption lost us members, which took us over two years to recover. We are already facing competition from private leisure sites and the need to charge full price to our members when public swimming is free.

We are self funding and contribute circa £1,000 every two months to the city leisure department. We have been acknowledged by the Birmingham LGBT Trust as a major provider of sporting and exercise opportunities to a marginalised group, facing discrimination and difficulty in accessing mainstream provision. We were given support by the Sports Council to further promote our club.

Our next marketing campaign is currently on hold. We have been unable to compete in a European swim gala this Spring, due to uncertainty over coaching sessions, which we have needed to cancel. Our members are unable to swim in a proper fashion, underlined by a disastrous trip to Cocks Moors Woods Leisure Centre, where despite being promised proper swimming provision, we were restricted to half a “fun” pool. Birmingham Leisure Department is losing our considerable hire fees, and losing visitors to the city. A quarter of our members visit from neighbouring districts, and spend money afterwards in the local economy on food, drinks and shopping.

We would be grateful for repairs to be completed swiftly and to a timetable which allows us to limit damage to our club, and to remain major supporters of community swimming and equal opportunities for city and neighbouring residents.

Mark Hillier
For Moseley Shoals Swim Club

13 January 2011

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