Young Edinburgh swimmers celebrate return to lessons with reopening of 10 city pools

Young swimmers in Edinburgh are celebrating their return to swimming lessons with the reopening of ten pools across the city.

By Jamie McKenzie
Wednesday, 28th April 2021, 12:30 pm

Edinburgh Leisure has reopened pools at Ainslie Park Leisure Centre, Drumbrae Leisure Centre, Gracemount Leisure Centre, Dalry Swim Centre, Glenogle Swim Centre, Leith Victoria Swim Centre, Portobello Swim Centre, The Royal Commonwealth Pool, Queensferry High School and Currie High School.

It means 4,370 children across the Capital are able to take lessons, which resumed on April 26 when lockdown restrictions eased.

The Learn to Swim Framework, a partnership between Scottish Swimming and Scottish Water, is delivered by leisure trusts and aquatic providers and enables children of all ages to become safe and confident swimmers.

Children are enjoying their swimming lessons again. Pic: Euan Duff/Duff Company

Angela McCowan, aquatics development manager at Edinburgh Leisure, said: “We are delighted to be welcoming so many children and young people back to our pools across the city.

“Not only is it a great opportunity for them to get active again but they are learning critical life skills, which will keep them safe in and around water.”

New measures have been put in place including social distancing, additional hygiene procedures, instructors teaching from poolside and children arriving to lessons ‘beach ready’ with their swimming costumes on under clothing.

Around 85 percent of the 39 Learn to Swim Framework providers are set to resume their programmes over the coming weeks.

Swimming lessons have resumed. Pic: Euan Duff / Duff Company

The Learn to Swim partnership - aimed at youngsters from birth to 11 years old - was extended for a fourth year in 2020 following its success in creating a 100,000-strong new generation of safe swimmers.

Euan Lowe, Scottish Swimming chief executive officer, said: “After a long period of various closures and restrictions, we’re thrilled to see children return to the water.

“It’s great to see their excitement and eagerness to get back into the water. We look forward to seeing lessons resume right across the country over the coming weeks.

“It is also encouraging to see the nation’s youngsters take a lead in showing that health and leisure activities can be resumed post-lockdown. We know from recent studies and advice from the World Health Organisation that the properties of chlorine make pool environments safe spaces during this pandemic to participate in sport and exercise.”

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