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Rivermead Leisure Centre Pool – Open Date Announced

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READING’S modern new 25-metre community swimming pool and teaching and diving pool at its flagship Rivermead Leisure Centre are set to open to the public on Monday 17 June 2024.

Rivermead Leisure Centre Pool - 25m

The opening of the new pools and accompanying splashpad zone in just over two weeks time are the culmination of the Council’s £40m investment in the town’s leisure facilities, which has delivered improvements at all of the council’s leisure centres across the borough.

Key features of the new Rivermead pools include:

  • A 25m 8-lane main pool with partially movable floor from poolside level to 1.80m deep to allow a range of activities including swimming lessons, community groups, swimming competitions, synchronised swimming, rehabilitation exercises, water aerobics, and much more.
  • A teaching and diving pool with 5 metre dive tower; 3 metre springboard and two 1 metre spring dives, with completely moveable floor from poolside level to 3.7m deep.
  • A dive tower safety gate to prevent access to the tower when the dive pool floor is raised.
  • A splash pad fun zone for younger children.
  • State of the art accessible changing facilities with accessible toilet, shower, changing table and hoist. There will also be ‘pool pods’ for both the main pool and diving pool to enable swimmers with limited mobility including wheelchair users to get in and out of the water easily and independently. The new facilities are fully wheelchair accessible, with level access between the changing rooms and the pool.
  • Two spectator seating areas able to seat over 250 including 7 wheelchair accessible spaces.

Over a 12 day period, the 25-metre, 8-lane main swimming pool, and the teaching and diving pool were filled with 1,700,000 litres of water and will very soon be ready to welcome visitors.

The modern facilities are designed with a focus on accessibility and sustainability to benefit everyone in Reading. As well as investing in new facilities, the Council is also funding targeted activities such as the Physical Activity Referral Scheme where health professionals can refer patients to low-cost programmes to help improve, manage or prevent health conditions such as diabetes, hypertension and depression reflecting the Council’s overall ethos of everybody being able to share in Reading’s success.

The Rivermead community pool and diving and teaching pool complement the Rivermead dry side facilities which opened in July 2023. With the opening of Rivermead’s new pools, the Council and residents are set to celebrate yet another unique facility (alongside Palmer Park Leisure Centre and Stadium opened in December 2022) putting Reading firmly on the map regionally as a top sports destination combining the benefits of a swimming pool at Rivermead with:

  • 120-station gym with 3 studios,
  • 6-court sports hall with 250 spectator seats,
  • accessible toilets and changing facilities
  • soft play, new reception area and café
  • outside play area

The new Rivermead facilities have been developed to BREEAM Excellent standards (which is the world’s leading sustainability assessment method) and with the use of renewables where possible, as well as putting in place measures to reduce carbon emissions and improve environmental efficiency. Two air source heat pumps (ASHP) at Rivermead will equate to around a 75% reduction of the carbon emission rate of the new centre’s heating system and at their peak power, Rivermead’s impressive 770 solar panels will output over 296 kW.

Cllr Adele Barnett-Ward, Reading’s Lead Councillor for Leisure and Culture, said: “We are now just days away from delivering on our promise of more new pools Reading and I’m sure residents are as excited as I am at the thought of being able to enjoy the new and improved facilities over the summer break.”

The new Rivermead Leisure Centre represents yet another significant investment by the Council and provides swimming pools that are both modern and fully fit for the future. These two new pools are part of our commitment to ensuring that everyone in the community has access to the resources they need to lead healthy and active lives. And we haven’t forgotten the fun – the splash pad is sure to become a family favourite!”

“I’m proud to be able to say the centre has been built to BREEAM Excellent environmental standards and is designed to create an inclusive fitness environment so everyone in our community can join in and experience the benefits of physical activity.”

Reading Partnership Manager, Craig Woodward, said: “We are all looking forward to the opening of the new pools at Rivermead Leisure Centre, with the facilities continuing the ongoing improvements to the leisure facilities in Reading. It is a very exciting time and we are looking forward to being able to welcome local residents into the pools very soon”.

Gert-Jan Peeters, director at Pellikaan Construction Ltd, said: “It is great to see the final parts of the project coming together and knowing that very soon, people will be using the new swimming pools and diving pool! We look forward to see that happen, as for our team, there is no better reward for the hard work than to see people using and enjoying the facilities that we built.

Residents can book pool activities including Swim For Fitness, Swim for Families and Aqua Aerobics from 10 June 2024 at https://www.better.org.uk/leisure-centre/reading/rivermead-leisure-centre

There are a range of pay-as-you-go options and memberships available. Reading residents can sign up for a free Resident Card, to access 30% of the standard prices (with 50% for concessions). Visit: https://memberships.better.org.uk/centre/rivermead-leisure-complex select Single Payment as your payment type, select appropriate resident membership for £0.00 Better Adult Resident, Better Adult Concessionary (this gives you an up to 50% discount) or Better Junior. Follow the steps on the website to confirm your order and you will be emailed your resident membership details. GLL, who run Reading’s leisure facilities on behalf of the Council, will be in contact with all centre users to ensure they are aware in good time of changes to swimming sessions.