Big splash for Warminster Sports Centre's birthday bash
2:00pm Saturday 2nd November 2013 in Latest News
Past and present staff at Warminster Sports Centre met up on Sunday to celebrate the centre’s 40th anniversary by recreating a photo taken when it opened in 1973.
The sports centre, which is situated in the grounds of Kingdown School in Woodcock Road, was opened on October 24, 1973, by Warminster Urban District Council chairman Arthur Beaven and cost £175,000 to build.
To mark the centre’s 40th birthday, staff organised a two-hour charity Zumbathon, which raised over £100 for Heart UK, as well as bringing together former employees who were working when the centre first opened.
Among those who returned was Eileen Foreman, chief assistant, Doug Winstone, centre superintendent, Eric Martin, founder of the Tuesday Badminton Club, and assistant superintendent John Bosley.
Mr Martin, 86, of Cop-heap Rise, Warminster, who researched the centre for the celebration, said: “I’m very pleased that the 40th anniversary has been recognised, as I have used the centre since it opened.
“It has changed in many ways over the 40 years, as there was no gym, squash courts or exercise studio when it opened.
“Where the gym is now there used to be a bar and recreation area, where we would go for a drink after badminton.”
The wife of the centre’s chairman and Urban Council member Alwyn Curtis and the grandson of the Urban Council’s then vice chairman L. Burgess were also in attendance for the celebration.
Bradley Butler, duty manager at Warminster Sports Centre, said: “On behalf of Warminster Sports Centre, we would like to thank everyone that helped and participated in our 40th anniversary.
“It was a really successful weekend and as well as raising money for charity, it was great that we were able to bring together most of the people in the picture at the sports centre’s opening ceremony.
“They had lots of stories about the centre and what it used to be like. Some of them hadn’t seen it for years and it was fascinating listening to them talk about the changes between then and now.”
The inaugural meeting of Warminster Swimming Club took place at the sports centre a few days after it opened, on October 29, 1973, when charges for using the pool were 15p for over 18s and 10p for under 18s and OAPs.
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