Council 'washes hands' of Westbury Swimming Club claim
6:00am Friday 10th January 2014 in By Andy Baber, Senior reporter for Trowbridge
Westbury Amateur Swimming Club’s claim for compensation from Wiltshire Council for money lost while the swimming pool was closed from March to June last year has fallen on deaf ears.
The club submitted a compensation claim for about £3,000, which takes into account some of the members the club lost, as well as travel expenses, costs for using other pools and refunds for cancelled sessions.
The pool was originally expected to close for three to four weeks from March so repairs could be carried out by contractors after the new pool lining failed, but further issues resulted in the opening being put back to June 10.
The council eventually appointed a new contractor to carry out the repairs on the pool, while seeking the full cost of the work needed from the original contractors.
Westbury Amateur Swimming Club secretary Neil Tribick said: “We have been told that all the council is offering is help to raise membership numbers.
“They have said we should put any claim to DC Leisure. They have basically washed their hands of it. What are they going to do to help build up our membership that we are not already doing?
“We know there is nothing contractually obligating them, but morally we feel they owe us something as we are the main users of the pool.”
Mr Tribick added that the club’s claim only covered about one third of the members they ended up losing, with 24 swimmers deciding to cancel their membership.
A Wiltshire Council spokes-man said: “We made every effort to help Westbury Swimming Club find pool space. This has continued since the pool re-opened including offering to help the club secure new members.
“We made it clear that any claim for compensation would have to be sought from DC Leisure. However, DC Leisure has also confirmed that their booking conditions do not provide compensation in instances such as these.
“Wiltshire Council has reached an agreement with the contractor to recover costs for work which resulted in the pool being closed for longer than planned. The council was only able to claim for the costs relating to the delay.”
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