Even Adam Peaty Struggles For Lane Space, As No Pools Open In Derby

As unlikely as it sounds, even holding a swimming World Record doesn’t bolster one’s credit when trying to track down pool space for training.

Britain’s breaststroking ace Adam Peaty has just found out that one of his training sites, Queen’s Leisure Center, has been closed by the Derby City Council. With just over 100 days to go until Rio, Peaty and coach Mel Marshall had plans to train part-time at the Center, whose family pool had closed in November due to roofing issues, but still had its gala and training pools open.

Citing that the roofing concerns are worse than originally thought, the council decided the entire center would need to temporarily close. “Structurally-designed scaffolding is required to support the ceiling and roof to allow the investigatory assessment works to be carried out and subsequent repair works to take place,” said a Council spokesman.

It now means that there are no public swimming pools in the city of Derby, the would-be home training ground of double World Champion Peaty. Peaty had been using the center’s gala pool once or twice a week as part of his training, but the closure of the entire center now means that the lane time is entirely unavailable. He now must use pools in Repton and Loughborough.

The council’s closure decision came on the day that Peaty was officially selected to represent the nation of Great Britain in his first Olympic Games. As such, the timing couldn’t prove to be more unfavorable for Peaty’s pre-Olympic training plans.

Says Marshall on the situation, “On the day that we are celebrating the fact that a City of Derby swimmer, Adam Peaty, has been selected for the Olympics, the council announces that the pool is being closed. I am absolutely fuming about it.”

“We lost one pool in November [the centre’s family pool], one pool in March [Moorways] and now we have lost the main [Gala] pool at Queen’s. That is fundamentally wrong. There are thousands of kids who need to be taught to swim and now they are being deprived of that opportunity. We have had meeting after meeting with the council and we appreciate that they are having a lot of things to deal with,” Marshall commented. (Derby Telegraph)

“Swimming seems to have been lumped together with all the other problems. We are a developed country and people should be able to swim. If you can’t there is a problem.”

She added, “Adam grew up in the family pool. If the Family Pool hadn’t closed he would still have been doing training sessions there. Adam joined us eight years ago and although his performances for the club have been the cherry on the cake, there are plenty of others who deserve the opportunity to try to follow in his footsteps.”

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Irish Ringer
8 years ago

Come train in the states. Go to Flagstaff and train at 7000ft.

8 years ago

Britain has around thirty 50m pools.

Reply to  Vespino
8 years ago

When Bill went to GB in 2001 he was often asked why the difference in medals between Australia & GB at the recent Olympics. One of his more mundane replies was that Australia had 1500 50 mtr pools & GB had 6.

It’s a cultural thing . Australians expect a 50 mtr lane waiting for them 6am -6pm even if they can barely swim. 25 mtr pools are acceptable in limited circumstances & a good place to put kids but otherwise are seen as cheapskate & authorities trying to cheat us out of our rightful space. It helps that there was a tradition of communities honouring WW1 & 2 dead with a local pool & this is a big… Read more »

8 years ago

This is what makes Britain’s gains in swimming incredible, and particularly Peaty’s – He trained solely in SC pools for an incredibly long time.

Australia has 47 Olympic sized swimming pools & a population of 22million. Britain has 8 and a population of nearly 70million. Even South Africa has 22.

Outside of the Performancw Centres, facilities are third world.

Lets hope this doesn’t affect Adam too severely.


Reply to  Dee
8 years ago

Anyone know how many LC pools in the USA? It would be an interesting stat.

Reply to  Dee
8 years ago

Britain has got more than 8 LC pools, I know this from personal experience.

Although, i do have to agree with you that most sc facilities in the UK are pretty 3rd world

8 years ago

Mirrors the pool situation in Newcastle upon Tyne. Crazy, and no sign of Olympic legacy from London 2012 – let alone allowing adequate preparation for one of our best medal chances for Rio 2016…

8 years ago

Crazy that a city the size of Derby will have no public swimming pools open for the foreseeable future.

About Retta Race

Retta Race

Former Masters swimmer and coach Loretta (Retta) thrives on a non-stop but productive schedule. Nowadays, that includes having just earned her MBA while working full-time in IT while owning French 75 Boutique while also providing swimming insight for BBC.

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