The last two seasons' operations were shaped and dominated by coronavirus measures. This season we intend to operate much more freely. But as we all know, the national mood and the virulence of Covid-19 can cause the best-laid plans to be turned upside down.
It is our current intention to operate without any specific covid controls. The key points we are taking into account are as follows:
- Transmission is by inhalation, so we won't be providing disinfecting hand gel nor will we be deliberately disinfecting touch surfaces
- We will still be keen to have people shower before and after use of the pool as this cuts the amount of disinfecting chemicals that are needed in the water
- The chlorine in the pool water kills viruses
- The most dangerous place for transmission is the changing rooms especially if crowded
- If you therefore want to change outdoors (like on the beach) then that's ok with us
- You are welcome to bring your own toys (and use them provided the Lifeguard is comfortable with them being used) but the pool's own toys and floats will be available for use
This season's plans
One of the things we learnt during the pandemic is that having exact hour-long sessions where people get 40-45 mins in the water and use the remaining time to get changed and in and out of the site was a good system. It avoided congestion and people felt comfortable with the element of 'privacy' that it provided. So we are doing that again this coming season. As regards specifics here are a few details:
- Last season we didn't run the turn-up-and-pay public afternoon sessions until late in the year. This year we are going to start the season with those sessions running. During holiday times and weekends they will run 2pm until 4pm. During term times they will run from 3:30pm (not 3pm to allow pupils from the British School time to get to the pool) until 5 pm
- Lane swimming will be from 6pm until 8pm on weekdays this is a bit longer than we used to run; we used to start at 6:30. We are planning to keep lane occupation down to 4 people in each of the three lanes. This might mean waiting a bit on occasions but should improve your experience
- We haven't run swimming lessons for two seasons due to the virus but now we expect to be able to resume them. The plan is to have 3 consecutive swimming lessons on Saturday mornings 10:00, 10:30 & 11:00 They will be in courses of 6 weeks for beginners, intermediates and advanced. You can book these on the website
Booking the pool
A huge lesson the coronavirus controls taught us was that people love booking the pool for their own private parties. It is very economical, a great experience and anyone can book. There are two options that we will continue to run:
- A pool booking well in advance is available (you know when your birthday is!) where you can bring up to 35 swimmers and some spectators. There is a covered veranda area where the group can congregate after or during the swim. But please note that if you have booked an hour then you can only be on site for an hour because the next session will be starting. If you think you need longer then please book 2 consecutive hours The price for an hour booking is £60
- Once we have got our timetable populated and we find there are some slots left that can be used in the upcoming week we will be releasing them for booking at the astonishingly great value price of £30! But this is for a maximum of 10 swimmers and 3 spectators.
And just a word of civic sentiment here... With these very economical prices it might be tempting to hire the pool for regular group activities that are not just general swimming (eg out-of-town swimming clubs). This is not welcome because people in the Wotton area pay a proportion of their council tax to keep the pool running for the benefit of local people. So the setting up of semi-commercial routine use of the pool is not permitted unless arranged formally with the trustees.