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Popular pools out for summer

PHOTO/FILE

Council planning for cool solutions

PAM GRAHAM
[email protected]

Masterton’s outdoor lido and toddlers’ swimming pools are out of action for summer and Masterton District Council is talking to schools to see if they can use their facilities.

The council had earlier said it needed to put a PVC liner in the almost 50-year-old pool but there has been no sign of it being installed.

Then on Friday it revealed the job was a big one, best done in summer.

A massive 126,000 litres of water needs to be added to the lido pool each day to compensate for leaks and water overflow spillage.

It wasn’t worth filling the pool and then emptying it to get the work done in January 2019, especially when the council was wanting to show leadership on the issue of water conservation.

The pool needs to be completely dry for work to be done and, considering the rate of leakage, a decision was made not to open, the council said.

The refilling each day is equivalent to the amount of water 630 people would use in a day, the council said.

“Given the importance of water conservation, and the forecasts for a long dry summer, this is about council leading the way and making a decision that helps ensure a healthy supply of water to Masterton over summer,” the council said.

The diving pool will remain open.

Mayor Lyn Patterson said she takes her grandchildren to the outdoor lido pool in summer.

“It is a bit sad but watch this space for alternatives,” she said.

She said contractors were extremely busy and “that’s some of the issue”.

“The reality is this is the best time when we can get contractors to do it and the summer time is the best time to have it done,” she said.

“However, we can look forward to the next 50 years of using the lido pool,” she said.

The council is trying to portray it as a good news story, emphasising $250,000 is being invested in the pool to make it better.

Council documents have shown the council is hoping to get 50 per cent of the cost of the PVC liner from Trust House.

Patterson said an application had been made to Trust House but she didn’t know how it was going.

The PVC liner will stop the ongoing issue of water leaking through the bottom of the pool.

Work is also being done to capture waste water lost through overflow channels at the side of the pool and maintenance will be done to the hydro slide.

Manager of community facilities and activities Andrea Jackson, said the pool was an important asset that needed investment.

The majority of the work will be done in January.

Council could not provide lido pool usage figures because it is part of a wider complex.

“We understand many of our residents look forward to spending summer days in our outdoor pool,” Jackson said. “With that in mind, we’re currently working on some exciting alternatives to ensure people keep cool over summer – watch this space.”

Carterton District Council’s outdoor pool opened for the summer from Saturday and entry is free.

The three summer pools in the South Wairarapa District are open from December 1 to March 17 and entry is also free. They are Featherston Pool, Martinborough Pool and Greytown Pool and they are all managed by CityCare Ltd.

Carterton Mayor John Booth said Carterton always got a lot of people down from Masterton at its summer pool but staff would monitor the situation for health and safety issues now that Masterton wasn’t opening its lido pool.

Masterton Swim Club president Paul Oliver said club swimmers mostly used one of the two indoor pools but the closure of the lido pool would likely put pressure on use of the indoor pools.

The lido pool was mostly used for splashing about and cooling off and there were covered areas for picnics. It was a popular recreational facility, especially for families with children.

“There is pressure on swim lanes in existing pools,” he said.

He said Lakeview School had a reasonable-sized pool, which may be an alternative.

Masterton’s council have negotiated with pool manager Belgravia in the past to provide a week or two of free swimming.

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