The next generation of home-grown Olympic swimmers are training using state-of-the-art facilities at the new Harvey Hadden Sports Village, ahead of Beechdale Swimming Centre closing its doors to the public on Friday 28 August.
Beechdale has played its part in the success stories of Olympic Gold Medallist Rebecca Adlington and Paralympic Gold Medallists Sam and Ollie Hynd – but as one of the oldest leisure facilities owned by the City Council, no longer meets the needs and expectations of customers.
As part of the City Council’s commitment to delivering improvements in the quality of its Leisure Centre network, local residents will be able to use the fantastic new facilities at Harvey Hadden Sports Village when it opens on 1 September – less than two miles away.
Reduced weekly operating hours 12noon – 8pm will be in place at Beechdale from 3 August to allow the transition to take place. School groups and clubs that currently use Beechdale are in the process of transferring across to Harvey Hadden. Beechdale Swimming Centre dates back to 1970 which unfortunately means the building doesn’t meet modern accessibility requirements or the needs and expectations of customers. The building also does not meet the standards approved by many sporting bodies. One of the City Council’s longstanding clubs Nova Centurion has already taken the plunge in transferring across to Harvey Hadden. With a strong track record of producing Olympic Gold Medallists; their greatest achievement being by Rebecca Adlington in 2008 and 2012 Olympics and Sam and Ollie Hynd in the 2008 and 2012 Paralympics. Currently they have 276 swimmers across the County.
Josie Grange, Former President of the Amateur Swimming Association said: “The County Association has trained in Beechdale pool on Monday evenings since it opened. Back then it was the best in the area, but over the years it has become more difficult for training. The air temperature can be very hot, which has an effect on our swimmers who churn up the water with their training and the chlorine tends to lie on the water surface.
“Moving to Harvey Hadden is amazing. We have the advantage of being able to train with the pool at 50m length in the mornings and have a great 25m pool in the evenings. The poolside is bigger which helps with before pool and after pool landwork exercises, and the whole place is exciting to be in.
“Moving from Beechdale to Harvey Hadden is inspiring a new generation of competitive swimmers.”
Councillor Dave Trimble, Portfolio Holder for Leisure and Culture added “People will have fond memories of Beechdale and many will have learnt to swim there but it’s time to look ahead to a new era. Harvey Hadden Sports Village is an iconic facility that will put Nottingham on the map as the home of sport. On the one hand we’ve got a venue that can host competitions at all levels including international events, but at its heart is a fantastic facility for the community to use and for grass roots sports to flourish. “
The £16m redevelopment which includes £1.94m from Sport England’s Iconic Facilities Fund is the largest investment and final stage of Nottingham City Council’s Leisure Centre Transformation Programme to create fewer, better quality leisure facilities across the city.
State-of-the-art facilities include a 50m swimming pool with spectator area, new squash courts, gym, two multi-use activity studios, health suite, changing rooms and café as well as upgraded sports hall where multiple sports can be played. Outdoor improvements include the athletics stadium, a new 1.5km cycling circuit, refurbished football pitches and changing facilities.
The council is committed to increasing participation in disability sport; for disabled swimmers there are easy access pool steps, a poolside hoist and fully accessible Changing Places facility.
Beechdale will be sold for development but the exact use of the land is yet to be decided.