According to a local councilor, it costs the Wexford Swimming Club up to €50,000 a year for its 60 members to use the municipal swimming pool at Ferrybank, a demand that puts undue financial pressure on the community organisation.
The club uses the Wexford County Council owned swimming pool four times midweek 6am-8am and Sunday 9am-11am and must pay €20 per hour per lane to the management company who manages the installation.
Labor Councilor George Lawlor highlighted the annual cost during a Council discussion of the facilities Wexford Parish plans to provide from the proceeds of the sale of Dún Mhuire Hall.
“Here we are asking others what they are going to provide when we won’t be providing municipal facilities in Wexford – football clubs are asking for facilities which we don’t have the ground to provide and we had a Jujitsu club who was going to be homeless and we had nothing to offer them,” he said.
“Ferrybank Swimming Pool is a community facility and if we are looking to make a profit we are going in the wrong direction. If that were the case we would never have a bus, train or hospital in this country.
“To ask a swimming club of 60 members of different ages, levels and abilities to pay up to €50,000 for the use of a municipal swimming pool is a disgrace. This club renders an extremely valuable service and deserves our support.”
Cllr Lawlor said he was calling for a realistic approach to the charges in order to support the club. “There is no point in hailing the club if one of its members becomes a national or Olympic champion. We have to support them now.
“I would like to see the county council and the management company come together to support the swimming club and be realistic about these charges. It is a community municipal swimming pool and not a luxury complex.