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NEWS IN BRIEF


EXETER POOL PLANS SLAMMED BY NATIONAL PRESSURE GROUP Plans to spend £20m on a new swimming pool in Exeter city centre have been branded an “outrageous misuse of public money” by national pressure group, the TaxPayers’ Alliance. The city council wants to build the pool on the site of a current bus station with the new facility replacing the city’s aging Pyramids pool, which is no longer seen as being fit for purpose.


The Alliance’s South West spokesman Tim Newark recently visited Exeter to support local campaigners and said: “It has all the elements of a classic white elephant,” and added: “In an age of austerity when there are so many demands on public money, the thought of lavishing £20m on a swimming pool that, frankly, has little popular support, seems an outrageous misuse of public money.”


SWIMMING INSTRUCTOR’S POOL PLANS GIVEN GO-AHEAD


A woman who sold her house and car to fund the building of a swimming pool to teach underprivileged children to swim has seen her plans receive the green light. They were approved by South Derbyshire District Council and work can now begin to build the five lane 20-metre pool.


Forty three year old


swimming coach Sarah Bates, who will continue to teach people to swim at the new pool, was delighted to hear th at her project had been given the go-ahead, saying:” It’s been a long time coming. We’ve been waiting for a while. I’m very pleased and I’m still in shock. “I’m really wanting to get into it now. I have moved house twice and am moving again this weekend. All of my equity that came from the house has gone into the business.”


www.swimmingpoolnews.co.uk


Certikin Dinner A Great Opportunity To Network And Unwind


The Certikin Seminar & Showcase at Heythrop Park Resort was followed in the evening by the Certikin Dinner in the sumptuous surroundings of the hotel’s dining room. This rounded off the day’s proceedings in an informal and very enjoyable manner. Thirty-one suppliers and sponsors attended the dinner from 17 companies and approximately 200 people from over 80 companies attended the delicious three course dinner and networking event. Guests were entertained by after dinner speaker, the ex-BBC chief political correspondent, John Sargeant who regaled them on his colourful broadcasting career including some very humorous anecdotes about Maggie Thatcher and Tony


Blair. Guests then took to the dance floor for a disco that went on into the small hours.


The day’s seminar and evening dinner drew some very favourable comments such as those from Maggie Gilpin at Westcountry Leisure who said “the day was very informative and we came away with some good ideas”; Steve Watson from Lennox Leisure commented on how “well presented and organised” the whole event was and Kevin Dack from the Fowler Group said “it was ni ce to meet the faces behind the suppliers. Such a well planned, professional event”.


Certikin International 01993 778855 www.certikin.co.uk


Survey Links Involvement In Sauna Sector To Wet Leisure Success


Close scrutiny of data from the latest Wet Leisure Industry Survey suggests that the sauna sector is not only growing but is an important factor in the success of those businesses reporting greatest satisfaction with their year.


The annual report, whose results were distributed at SPATEX in February, showed again that wet leisure businesses are tending to diversify into all three of the industry’s main sectors: pool, spa and sauna.


While the previous year saw a very obvious leap in the proportion of respondents involved in selling and installing saunas, from 40% to 50%, the figures for 2014 required more subtle analysis. Although the percentage of businesses ticking to say they operate in the sauna sector has actually dropped very slightly, account must also be taken of those ticking the fourth box, to indicate ‘other’. Almost half of them indicated that their ‘other’ area of activity was installing steam rooms and steam showers – which is closely allied to the sauna business.


More significant still is the fact that those who reported having an ‘extremely good’ year were more


likely to have been selling saunas than the industry average. The implication is that businesses would be well advised to expand into sauna if they want to join that happiest of groups. This is rein forced by the discovery that, among those who reported an extremely good year in 2013, there had been a growth of almost 50% in the importance of sauna compared to the previous year. Jamie Adams, Golden Coast’s Managing Director, said: “The 2014 results tell us there is still a major opportunity for businesses expanding into sauna. Despite worries about the recession in recent years, many householders now have a growing amount of disposable income and are choosing to spend it on home improvement and health. This is reflected in sauna sales which have increased – year-on- year – over the past decade.” He added: “Together with our sauna partner


Tylö, which is famed for the quality of its sauna products, we have been working to persuade pool and spa businesses to adapt their existing knowledge, skills, resources and customer bases to what is in many ways a very similar sector. For businesses interested in moving into sauna, Golden Coast has an e-book which can be downloaded free of charge from their website and which sets out the advantages and the practical steps needed to succeed. The full Wet Leisure Industry Survey report for 2014 can be downloaded from the Golden Coast website too.


Golden Coast 01271 378100 www.goldenc.co


SPN April 2015 17


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