MP promotes re-opening of outside pool

A Medway MP has backed campaigners in transforming a recreation park’s abandoned leisure pool.

The Strand Pool was a popular spot for local residents during the summer holidays, however when Medway Council cut funding to leisure activities the pool closed in the summer of 2016.

The Strand, Gillingham

A couple years later the ‘Friends of the Strand Pool’ was set up, a petition was launched and a Facebook and website was set up to improve the communication with the Council’s Sport, Leisure and Tourism bosses.

The Strand Pool website says: ‘Since becoming established, FOSP members have been overwhelmed with the level of support from local people – over 5,500 supported our petition and our Facebook posts reach as many as 28,000 people – and now we work in partnership with the Council to improve the day-to-day running of the Pool and to promote greater usage through active marketing.’

Labour MP, Andy Stamp said: ‘This year, I’m really hoping the Strand Pool will go from strength to strength. It’s looking great and like many other residents, I can’t wait to get down there for a swim!

‘The Pool is set to open for the 2018 summer season on Saturday 26th May at 11am – please support the Pool, it’s a great community asset which we can all be proud of once again.

‘Thank you to everyone who supported the campaign to save the Pool, thank you to the staff who have once again done a great job getting it ready this year, and thank you to the Friends Group who have spear-headed the improvements!’


Ducks have a swim in the abandoned pool
Credit to: The Strand Pool Facebook Page

Several local residents to the park have fond memories of last time it was open and hope more memories can be made when it re-opens:

Tommy Hinkley: During a nice hot summers day there is no place better to be than an outdoor pool. Used to spend quite a lot of time down there with my family when I was younger and we used to really enjoy the strand. Unfortunately, the hygiene standards started to drop I assume it was down to not having enough budget to maintain it. As long as they maintain the hygiene levels to a high standard I believe the outdoor pool area and the strand in general will be thriving with new business which has been lacking there for the past few years.”

Lynne Gilby: Think it’s a great idea for the local kids as long as it’s maintained properly loved spending time down the Strand when I was a kid although be it a long time ago

Stan Tray: I used to love the Strand swimming pool and the paddling pool and when they had paddle boats it was great fun

Shaun Nicholls: Providing they maintain it better than in recent years then I think its a good idea as its the only outdoor leisure pool in the area.

Credit to: The Strand Pool Facebook page

From the public’s support so far it should be a popular spot for Medway residents this summer.