£12million Arc axes swim class

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A Darley Dale woman is making a splash after being told her swimming lessons had been axed.

Trudy Massey was incensed after learning that the one hour a week beginners swimming lesson she took at the Arc leisure centre was to be cancelled.

She had been learning to swim at the state–of–the–art £12million facility for seven weeks, joined by another learner, who had been there for 16 weeks.

“They said it wasn’t really viable with there only being two of us,” Trudy said.

“But the week before they stopped them two more people came down and wanted to learn to swim, but of course when they found out the lessons were cancelled they didn’t come back.”

Trudy questioned whether the leisure centre could have reduced the space they used to two lanes.

The 54–year–old decided she wanted to learn to swim so that she could enjoy holidays with her family without worrying about getting in the pool.

“I think we should be allowed to have one hour out of all the time they are open – it just doesn’t seem fair,” Trudy said.

A spokesman for Derbyshire Dales District Council, which operates the Arc leisure centre, said: “Three weeks before the adult swimming classes ended we spoke personally to the people who attended them with the news that sadly we were having to take the decision because of lack of interest.

“Arc Leisure Matlock has to operate like any other business and that means constantly reviewing classes and finding out what is working and what is not.

“The sad fact is that a maximum of only three people attended these classes, using half the main pool.

“When Arc was approached by the Amateur Swimming Association to pilot a new Swimfit programme that guaranteed more than 20 local people would be making good use of the main pool, we had to go with that as an alternative.

“However we are pledging to re-examine the way we promote adult swimming lessons with the aim of hopefully attracting enough support some time in the future to re-launch the classes.

“In the meantime we will be talking again to the two ladies who have expressed their dissatisfaction at the ending of the classes for the time being.”