Wednesday, 1 April 2009

Free swimming

Thanet district Council press release

Swimmers aged 16 and under or 60 and over can now swim for free in Thanet from today (Wednesday 1 April).

The new initiative, which aims to improve fitness, is being funded with government money and £40,000 from the NHS Eastern and Coastal Kent and will run for two years until March 2011.

Everyone in these two age groups can now swim free of charge during public swimming sessions at both Ramsgate pool and Hartsdown Leisure Centre, although the scheme does not include instructor led fitness sessions, private lessons or swim school.

To join the scheme, people need to fill out a simple registration form before their first swim, at which point they will have to show proof of their age. They will then receive a “free swim card” that they will need to show on each subsequent visit.

Cllr. Shirley Tomlinson, Cabinet Member for Environmental Services, said: “We believe this is an excellent way to encourage more people to take up regular physical activity and that’s why we’ve signed up to be involved in this scheme. We want to see people taking up the opportunity of free swimming, as it’s an enjoyable way to get fit and an exceptionally popular sport, fuelled by Team GB’s success in the pool at the Beijing Olympics.”

Warren Reeves, Head of Operations for Thanet Leisureforce, added: "We are excited about being able to offer the scheme in partnership with Thanet District Council as this forms part of our strategic approach to engage the local community to participate in regular physical activities. We are also committed to assist in providing further activities and programmes aimed at increasing the wellbeing and health of the people of Thanet"

Full terms and conditions for the free swimming sessions can be found at the area’s leisure centres.

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