Record attendances for leisure facilities

A record number of visits to leisure centres and swimming pools is expected.

Figures show by the end of December, 1.07 million visitors had used the five main leisure centres in the borough – 20,000 more visits than at the same time lthe previous year.

And North Tyneside Council is hoping to beat last year’s figures of 540,000 swims at the four pools.

The authority is also continuing investing in facilities.

Over the next two months at Tynemouth Pool, the gym and health suite will undergo a £100,000 refurbishment as well as get £50,000 worth of new equipment.

Mayor Norma Redfearn said: “It’s clear from the figures that people enjoy using our facilities and keep coming back for more.”

“We have ensured that we have a leisure offer for the whole borough – and above what we are required to do so.”

The local authority boasts five leisure centres, four swimming pools, five gyms, seven dance studios, three large soft play areas, two spas and over 190 classes available for public use – in addition to the informal sports and leisure areas and parks.

An assessment by Sport England confirmed North Tyneside offers a larger swimming provision than the regional and national average.

And it is helping to develop the leading sports stars of the future with the borough’s swimming clubs having a track record for training swimmers to County, National and World standards, as well as helping set a world record.

It is being encouraged with a strengthened partnership between Tynemouth Amateur Swimming Club and Tynemouth Pool.

Tracey Booth, from Tynemouth Amateur Swimming Club, said: “Our partnership with Tynemouth Pool delivers a fantastic community service and supports swimmers to achieve their very best, as well as helping them to develop some key life skills to take them into the future.

“The club is going from strength to strength and is attracting swimmers from all over North Tyneside to Tynemouth.

“Swimmers at the club range from three to four-year-old non-swimmers to competitive swimmers who have represented the club at national and international competitions.

“Our masters section is growing in popularity and we are hoping to work in partnership with local athletics clubs to provide training for tri-athletes.

“Last year, the club were the top age group club at County Championships, had ten swimmers representing the club at British Nationals and two masters swimmers representing the Club at World Championships.

“In December, the Club set a new World Record when 100 of its swimmers swam a 50m relay in under 1 hour.

“The strengthened partnership will help us to achieve much more for North Tyneside residents.”