Why are pools closed?

Sometimes people have 'accidents' in swimming pools. This can include babies with poorly fitting nappies, excitable children who cannot wait to get to the toilet and people who feel unwell. These 'accidents' can result in pool closures that can take anything from 1 hour to 27 hours, depending on the type of 'accident' and level of cleaning needed. There is a possibility that somebody who has been unwell, including upset stomachs or diarrhoea, could bring in a bug called cryptosporidium.

Our supervising and managing staff are trained to assess the situation and understand the level of cleaning needed for each situation.


Cryptosporidium is present in the environment, commonly in grazing animals such as cows and sheep. It can find its way into us as people, and then passed on from person to person. This bug is resistant to chlorine at the normal levels used when people are swimming. If there has been an 'accidents', which could have possibly introduced it into the water we need to take immediate action to remove it. This will require us to close the pool for a considerable period of time to enable us to deal with this effectively.

The cleaning process

If there has been an 'accidents' in the pool, the first thing we will do is ask all bathers to leave the pool and use the showers. The affected pool will need to be cleaned and treated depending on the type of 'accidents'.

This can include using our pool vac and adding additional chemicals to the pool which we cannot use while people are swimming. We will then need to clean the filtration system, by removing the water and replacing with fresh water.

Finally, we need to make sure the water is chemically balanced again and warmed up for bathers. Sometimes doing all this can take up to 27 hours and means bathers cannot use the pools during this time. This affects all swimmers, from our swimming lessons, aqua zumba classes, public sessions, schools and many clubs who use our pools to train and develop their skills. We also have to use more water, and chemicals than usual and increased energy to bring the temperature of the pools to a suitable level to swim in.

You can help reduce closures!

The most important thing you can do to help us keep the water safe is:

  • Avoid swimming if you feel unwell, and especially if you have had sickness or diarrhoea in the last two days.
  • If your children are not fully potty trained, make sure that they are wearing well-fitting swim nappies (on sale at reception).
  • Encourage young swimmers to use the toilet before using the pool. Ensure they know to leave the pool to use the toilet before it's too late.
  • If you have problems with incontinence, make sure that you have suitable protection under your swimwear.
  • Use the showers before you enter the pool.
  • Use the toilets as you need to during your time with us. Wash your hands after you use the toilets or changing nappies.
  • If you start to feel unwell during your swim, stop and leave the water.
  • If you do have an 'accidents', please let our lifeguards know straight away, so it can be dealt with. Don't put other people at risk. We do understand that 'accidents' can happen.
  • Follow our hygiene rules, like not wearing outdoor shoes on poolside and checking your shoes before entering the changing rooms.
  • Even educating other members of the family on essential personal hygiene helps.

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