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Prolonged closure of Harrow Leisure Centre pool sparks concern for local swimming club

There are growing concerns about the ‘significant impact’ the prolonged closure of Harrow Leisure Centre pool may have on a local swimming club and the wider community, after it was revealed it won’t be able to re-open in time for the summer holidays.

Harrow Leisure Centre was forced to close its swimming pool and sauna back in March after inspectors raised concerns about the state of the ceiling. The council hoped the repair work would be completed in time for summer but will now remain closed for the duration of the holidays.

The treasurer of Harrow Swimming Club, Zak Andrawos, called the new ‘extremely disappointing’ and emphasised the ‘significant impact’ this would have on the club’s more than 600 members, its finances, and the wider community.

Speaking to the Local Democracy Reporting Service (LDRS), Mr Andrawos said: “The prolonged closure of Harrow Leisure Centre has created significant inconvenience and disruption for our community. The lack of urgency in addressing the repair work is disheartening, and it feels like the needs of the residents are not being prioritised.”

He added: “For our club, this means we will not be able to resume our Learn to Swim classes or our regular training sessions, which affects over 600 swimmers who rely on these facilities for their fitness, skill development, and social interaction. The disruption has caused logistical challenges for families and has impacted the physical and mental well-being of our members, especially the children.

“Additionally, the financial implications are severe, as we have had to refund fees for cancelled lessons and will continue to lose revenue until we can resume our programs. This situation also affects our coaching staff, who face uncertainty regarding their employment.”

The swimming pool and sauna has been closed since March 21 following a routine building inspection. Inspectors found that, whilst most of the leisure centre building is in good condition, the ceiling directly above the swimming pool was in need of essential repairs due to corrosion of the ceiling fixings.

Harrow Council and the centre’s management company, Everyone Active, decided to close the facilities with immediate effect as ‘the safety of people is our priority’. Whilst the facilities remain closed, memberships will be accepted at other Everyone Active venues, including Hatch End Swimming Pool, Northolt Leisure Centre, South Oxhey Leisure Centre and Vale Farm Sports Centre.

A statement released by Harrow Council said: “Public safety remains our biggest priority – this is something we will never compromise. We had hoped to have carried out repairs and reopen in time for the holidays, but unfortunately the pool and sauna will have to remain closed throughout the summer holidays. We know that this will be a huge disappointment as many people will have looked forward to their casual swims or summer classes.”

It adds: “We have carried out further assessments to identify what repairs need to be done. This is not a simple task and involves a complex process. We anticipate the work will be completed by late September, and we will work with our partners and contractors to try and finish the repairs sooner if possible. However, it is important the repairs are not rushed and are carried out properly for the safety of users and staff.”