Coventry City Council and CV Life has been awarded £216,000 after a successful partnership bid for a share of Sport England’s Swimming Pool Support Fund.
The fund is in place to give local people the opportunity to become more active by 2030. A total of £20m was available for local authorities across the country to bid for.
The funding comes from a central Government pot to assist with increased operating costs and to improve sustainability at leisure sites.
The awarded £216,000 will go towards helping to support the utilities costs of the swimming pools at The Wave and Xcel Leisure Centre.
CV Life, the organisation which operated the sites, will use the funding to support towards the increased cost of energy and chemical costs.
Cllr Kamran Caan, Cabinet Member for Public Health and Sport, said: “We are delighted to have worked on this bid with CV Life and find out that we are successful in securing the funding.
“This money will go towards essential costs at both leisure facilities to ensure they run as normal during the difficult time everyone is enduring. The cost of energy bills is extremely high right now and this funding will help us provide the same fantastic service to all of our leisure centre users.
“Swimming is a valuable life skill for people of all ages and contributes to both physical and mental health and wellbeing, so it’s really important to us that we can still enable our residents to stay active and use our pools.”
Out of the 317 local authorities in England, just 103 were selected to receive funding, with Coventry being one of them.
Steve Wiles, Director of Operations of CV Life, said: “We’re thrilled to have been awarded this vital funding and I’m pleased we’ve been able to work together with the council on a successful application.
“With the Covid-19 pandemic and the cost of living crisis, it’s been a difficult few years for everyone. Like our members, our venues have felt the financial toll these issues have taken.
“So this funding will help us to keep providing the same services to the people of Coventry without a detriment to quality. We take pride in making swimming accessible to everyone and we’re passionate about getting Coventry active, so it will go a long way in helping us deliver our goals.”
Sport England’s Director of Place, Lisa Dodd-Mayne, said: “We know just how vital swimming pools and leisure centres are to our nation’s activity levels, which is why Sport England is proud to have played a central role in the delivery of this fund.
“Many pools have faced a real and significant threat to their survival this year, as local authorities and operators battle the challenge of increased energy and maintenance costs, weakened reserves and difficulties with retaining staff.
“This announcement is an important moment in time but is by no means the end of the work facing us or the support available as we continue to work with our partners to ensure the long-term viability of these vital community resources.”
The £20m funding is part of a wider £60m pot that will be distributed over the coming months.