A DAD is furious at being told his family has to pay to swim in the pool at the Oasis even though he spent £1,573 on all-inclusive memberships before the lockdown.

Nicholas Hayes said he bought six memberships in February to enjoy the pool with his family. But the 47-year-old says Better, which runs the Oasis, has changed its rules.

Nick, 47, said: “They have changed their services offered to members without formally informing us. We specifically purchased the all-inclusive membership for my whole family, for this one benefit, as individual swimming sessions are so expensive.

“When we could finally use the memberships again on September 2, I was informed the leisure pool was no longer included in the all-inclusive memberships.”

The dad-of-four, who lives in the town centre, said Better has refused to refund the membership costs.

He said: “We had less than one month of use before lockdown. When Better reopened, they had taken away the use of the leisure pool.

“Despite trying to get a refund for the unused portion of the membership, Better refused, costing us over £1,400 in unused memberships.

“We home school our children and have spent their allocated budget of health and fitness on these now worthless memberships.”

Nick said he will now raise a complaint with trading standards.

A Better spokesperson said: “Free access to the leisure pool at the Oasis was not part of Mr Hayes’ formal membership contract. However, informally access had been given to members, when there was capacity, prior to the Covid-19 lockdown.

“Due to four months of enforced closure and now only being able to operate at a significantly reduced capacity in order to remain Covid-Secure. In order to try and remain financially viable and due to the requirement to reduce capacity, we have had to take the decision to enforce ticketed use only at the Oasis leisure pool.

“We recognise that this could have been communicated more clearly to our members, when our facilities reopened.

“To say Mr Hayes has lost £1,400 is disingenuous, because his membership gives him access to all Better-operated leisure facilities within Swindon, the leisure pool at the Oasis is just one small element of that. He and his family can therefore choose to swim in the fitness pools at the Oasis, The Link Centre, and the Health Hydro, use their gym facilities and take part in exercise classes.”

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