Race against time to plug gaps in Commie Pool roof

BOSSES at the Royal Commonwealth Pool have been warned they must win the race to be ready for the visit of Britain’s Olympic swimmers after its roof sprang a leak.

More than 40 Team GB hopefuls are due to complete preparations for the London Games at the pool from July 18-24.

Workmen yesterday began carrying out repairs after rain water began streaming into the refurbished £37 million flagship facility during torrential downpours on Wednesday, just 105 days after it reopened.

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Opposition councillors today called on leisure chiefs to make sure the pool was in top shape for the arrival of the athletes or risk leaving the Capital red-faced.

Councillor Paul Edie, leader of the city’s Liberal Democrat group, said: “It’s very important the pool is ready in time because the Olympic swimmers coming here is very important to the city’s prestige.

“It would be an embarrassment if it’s not ready – not as big as the trams but not great at all. This work needs to take place as quickly as possible.”

Councillor Lindsay Paterson, Conservative member for Almond, said: “It’s vital that the repairs are done as soon as possible because it’s a showpiece for the city and if it’s not 100 per cent up and running then it’s not the image that we want to put forward.

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“It’s very important for the city’s reputation that the roof does not leak when it comes to things like [training for the Olympics]. It needs to be in perfect working order after having all this money spent. We do not need another albatross like the trams in the city.”

It is understood contractors rather than taxpayers will foot the bill, with the problem believed to have emerged while the revamped pool was “under warranty”.

Cllr Edie added: “We can sort out the detail of who picks up the tab afterwards. But I would be disappointed if it fell outside the scope of the contract as it’s just a few weeks after the renovation. We are still in the middle of the tram fiasco as well.” Swimmers were left stunned on Wednesday after finding themselves being rained on from above. The pool remained open yesterday while workers began mending the roof.

Edinburgh Leisure’s director of operations Graeme Gardiner said: “Due to the extreme weather conditions experienced, there were some leaks at the Royal Commonwealth Pool.

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“We took the decision to prevent additional customers entering the swimming pool hall at the RCP as a precautionary measure while the situation was assessed.”

The venue was not closed at any time and remains open as normal.”

A spokesman for contractors Graham said: “The rain water drainage system has been designed to cope with above average rainfall. However, this was an extreme weather event, with around a month’s worth of rain falling in two hours.