Swim Ireland Launch Pop-Up Pool; First of its KindPool Bringing Swimming into Communities Across Ireland
Swim Ireland is delighted to launch our first ‘Pop-Up Pool’ the first of its kind in Ireland, which will bring swimming to communities across the island. Swim Ireland want to improve the opportunity and experience for all swimmers, and so, supported by Sport Ireland, we will bring our innovative solution to the very real problem hitting the headlines – where can you access swimming when your local pool is at capacity or too far away? (Minister of State for Sport Jack Chambers and Swim Ireland CEO Sarah Keane with Ellen Walshe pictured at the launch of Swim Ireland’s new Pop-Up Pool and Participation Strategy 2022-2026 at Donabate Portrane Community Centre, Dublin. ©INPHO/Ben Brady)
With the support of Fingal County Council our first Pop-Up Pool has landed at Donabate Portrane Community Centre since May 3rd, with additional pools coming soon in Wicklow and Sligo. Every 12-weeks the Pop-Up Pools will move new locations on its journey around Ireland.
Holding 45,000 litres of water, this 12m by 3.4m steel structure will remain in situ in Donabate until mid-July. The water is heated to a toasty 30 degrees and the pool is sheltered from the elements in a hard sided and heated marquee. There are changing rooms onsite, a ramp and a hoist; this accessible pool of water is the ideal place to learn to swim, hone your skills or just remember how great it feels to block out the world and dip your head in the water. With an ambitious target of 750 swimming experiences a week, Swim Ireland will have school swimming, evening and weekend swimming lessons, community groups and private hires available, the opportunities are endless.
Speaking at the launch Minister Chambers stated “This is a really novel way of delivering swimming opportunities in communities. I want to congratulate Swim Ireland on having the vision to consider such an innovative project and was delighted to provide grant funding to deliver the facility. I am committed to increasing participation in sport and swimming is one of the best forms of physical exercise for developing and maintaining high levels of physical fitness and is a sport which people can participate from a very early age and throughout their lives. Delivering new permanent swimming pools can be costly and take considerable time though and this new “pop-up” facility provides an excellent solution by delivering swimming opportunities at a number of locations at a relatively low cost. I certainly look forward to getting feedback from Swim Ireland in the months ahead on how the new initiative is working.”
Swim Ireland CEO Sarah Keane added ‘We are delighted to get the Pop-Up Pool up and running, this project is something we have been working on for quite some time and to see it come to fruition is really exciting. At Swim Ireland our vision is for ‘An Island of Swimmers’ and we hope that by bringing the Pop-Up Pool to the people, that we can teach thousands to swim and give them the experience and opportunity to see swimming as a skill and something they can participate in across all life stages. We also see the pop-up pool as a first step in supporting the development of the National Swimming Strategy, a major part of which will focus on swimming infrastructure indoors and outdoors.”
Deputy Mayor of Fingal Daniel Whooley said: “This is an innovative approach towards getting people of all ages to swim and to build up their confidence in the water, particularly as we approach the summer. Fingal is committed to developing sporting facilities for both the young, and the young at heart, throughout the County, and I am delighted we are able to host this first of its kind pop-up pool in Ireland.”
Speaking on behalf of Sport Ireland, CEO Dr, Una May said “This is a fantastic initiative by Swim Ireland that brings with it an opportunity for everyone to get involved in swimming, regardless of their ability or experience in the pool. I want to commend Swim Ireland for their innovative approach and getting this project off the ground. On behalf of Sport Ireland, I wish them every success with the first Pop-Up Pool this Summer.”
Irish Olympian Ellen Walshe will be a special guest on this Friday’s edition of ‘The Curtain Raiser.’