Issue - meetings

The People's Pool

Meeting: 04/03/2021 - Economy Regeneration & Housing Committee (Item 40)

40 The People's Pool pdf icon PDF 140 KB

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The report of the Director of Regeneration and Place provided an update on a proposal brought forward by an external organisation named Our Lido Ltd (OLL) to build a lido complex on a Council site within Wirral, fully funded by external grant funding applied for by OLL. The proposal (‘The People’s Pool’) was to provide a hub for the community with a mixed business model to support this to include a food and drink offer, retail, spaces for community use, a proactive employment and training policy, and potentially partnerships with local independent businesses and social enterprises. The aspirations for the pool itself were that it would provide a 50-metre-long pool, open all year round and heated using environmentally sustainable energy.


A decision had previously been taken by the Council to approve up to £80,000 grant funding to contribute towards feasibility work for the People’s Pool project through the Council’s Capital Budget (Council, 2 March 2020, Minute 122 refers). A decision had also previously been taken by the Leader of the Council to support the People’s Pool project and to approve the investigation to identify a Council site within Wirral to potentially be transferred under the community asset transfer process or occupied in some other way to be decided at a future date (Leader Decision, 24 March 2020 refers). Since its previous decisions, the Council had faced significant financial pressures largely connected to the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic, which required it to review its commitments. The New Brighton Masterplan had also been commissioned to develop a long-term framework to inform future decisions in New Brighton. It was considered that this represented a material change of circumstances.


Members asked questions about the proposal and were concerned at the use of Council funds at a time when budgets were under pressure, and the lack of risk for OLL. Officers had investigated OLL who were a Community Interest Company and they had applied elsewhere for funding.

A proposal in line with the recommendations within the report was voted on and lost with 4 votes for and 6 against.


Members continued discussion on the issue and were in favour of the Lido in principle but could not justify the spending of funds at the current time.


Councillor Andrew Hodson proposed that the Committee resolve to be in favour of the Lido in principle but could not justify the spending of funds at the current time and Councillor David Burgess-Joyce seconded this proposal.


RESOLVED (6 in favour, none against and 4 abstentions) –

That the People’s Pool project be supported, in principle, but the Committee could not support the funding request from Our Lido Ltd from the Council’s Capital Budget of £67,500 at the current time.