Caerphilly - Cabinet Set To Consider Changes To The Free Swimming Initiative

Caerphilly - Cabinet Set To Consider Changes To The Free Swimming Initiative

Sunday 29th Nov 2020

Caerphilly county borough council’s Cabinet will meet next week (Wednesday 16th October) to consider changes to the current Welsh Government funded Free Swimming Initiative.

Following an independent review of the Free Swimming Initiative, it was agreed by Welsh Government and Sport Wales that the current scheme needed to change in order to benefit those who currently are unable to access the scheme.

Therefore, the new scheme will focus on engaging young people from deprived areas while still maintaining a commitment to people over the age of 60, in a targeted approach that better utilises reduced budgets.

In response to this changing approach, Sport & Leisure Services have developed an alternative offer that meets the needs of the new objectives set out by the Welsh Government. The recommended option is to approve a new pricing structure that continues to support subsidised access to swimming for older adults (60+) and address the funding gap associated with the continued delivery of the free swimming initiative scheme.

Cllr Nigel George, the council’s Cabinet Member for Neighbourhood Services commented:

“Since the introduction of the Free Swim Initiative – the Sport & Leisure Services have consistently delivered above and beyond the required provision set by Welsh Government. For this reason, we appreciate that changes to the scheme are not ideal for our regular users.”

“However, under the new proposed scheme we reaffirm that there will still be opportunities to swim for free within Caerphilly’s leisure centres. We hope that the new scheme will help to provide access for a new audience of people who will grow to love swimming and all of its health benefits.”

Any changes to the Free Swimming Initiative will be communicated to users in advance of a new offer coming into effect. Any disruption will be minimised with timetable changes being considered in advance of any change.