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priced out of council amenities

(62 Posts)
morningtoncrescent62 Sun 03-Apr-16 16:42:56

I half-want to be told IABU, or at least have the flaws in my argument pointed out to me...

My council has recently hiked the cost of swimming in all its pools and phased out its most cost-effective season ticket-type options. I love swimming and I've been going regularly for years, but now it's going to become an occasional treat and a luxury because I can't justify the cost of regular sessions. AIBU to resent paying through my council tax for an amenity that's becoming accessible only to those who get free admittance (e.g. unemployed people and pensioners) and to those on high incomes and/or with lots of disposable cash who can afford the high prices? I'm on an above-average salary myself, and it seems wrong that those of us on low and middle incomes who are the majority of council tax-payers in my authority are being priced out of an amenity our council tax pays for.

When I catch myself thinking this I cringe a bit, as it sounds a bit Daily Mail-ish and entitled. And yes I know it's because of the cuts, and no I didn't vote Conservative. AIBU to mind? Should I just thank my lucky stars that we still have a local pool when so many others up and down the country have been closed?

RubbleBubble00 Sun 03-Apr-16 17:22:12

Are there still monthly payment options available?

My local leisure centre is on par with gyms in the area now so not much incentive to use it

cleaty Sun 03-Apr-16 17:27:33

Some Council Leisure Centres are not subsidised by taxpayers money. They have to pay for themselves. Maybe that is the situation where you live?

HelenaDove Sun 03-Apr-16 17:36:18

There is a very long thread running at the moment with ppl saying kids need to excersise more so they dont become overweight and/or obese. I expect you will get a lot of support on here from all the people saying that on that thread.

I think it should be at a price so ALL can afford it.

Creampastry Sun 03-Apr-16 17:43:17

Going swimming is bloody expensive! It's stupid, because if it were cheaper more people would go and kids would be healthier. Why is this simple logic unfathomable for the government!!

LemonBreeland Sun 03-Apr-16 17:46:43

It seems ridiculous to have price hikes and allow some people in for free. I've never heard of free swims for some people before.

Turbinaria Sun 03-Apr-16 17:51:56

Our council pools charge £5 per swim for adults and £1 for kids which is OK is yours more expensive than that?

BitterAndOnlySlightlyTwisted Sun 03-Apr-16 18:00:12

I've just checked my local pool and a single session is £4.60. I live in one of the most deprived boroughs in London and I think that's bloody outrageous.

twelly Sun 03-Apr-16 18:03:35

Not only does it appear using the pools have become expensive but the opening times do not suit those who are employed, i think that there does need to be a rethink so that those who do pay taxes to subsidise use can access the facilities

Valeriesquiteposh Sun 03-Apr-16 18:03:51

£6.50 for an adult

£5.70 for a CHILD

Dirty changing rooms and cold water

shitwithsugaron Sun 03-Apr-16 18:07:00

I was only moaning about this the other day, I would love to make swimming a regular thing with my 5 month old DD but I think £5.50 for what they call splash time is just a rip off. She gets free swimming until she's 16, it's me I pay for. I know I sound really tight but on mat leave things are tough and it adds up to £22 a month.
Then it's £1 for the lockers and £1 minimum car park, so you're talking £30ish a month!

Narnia72 Sun 03-Apr-16 18:07:55

Our swimming lessons have just been hiked up by a couple of quid, accompanied by a letter saying basically sorry if you can't afford it now! So we're swimming at the private school up the road, which also offers general swim sessions and is far cheaper. Well done on embracing the government initiative to combat childhood obesity there then...

GabiSolis Sun 03-Apr-16 18:09:25

A friend of mine runs the contract for the council leisure centres where he lives and they are not subsidised, they have to be self sufficient.

LurkingHusband Sun 03-Apr-16 18:12:07

You don't live in Dudley do you ?

morningtoncrescent62 Sun 03-Apr-16 18:12:38

Depending on the time of day, £5.50 or £7.50 for an adult, I don't know the price for children. And definitely subsidised by the council - I've no idea what the subsidy is, though, or the proportion of the running costs raised by entrance fees. The £7.50 fee is charged at the times that working adults are normally be able to make, ie before 9am and after 5pm.

LurkingHusband Sun 03-Apr-16 18:12:47

Funnily enough, in another browser tab I have my local leisure centre pricing scheme options open. And I was wondering if I imagined seeing - last year - a monthly season ticket option, which appears to have vanished !

nagynolonger Sun 03-Apr-16 18:13:11

Count yourself lucky if you still have a local pool and a library. We have lost the pools where my DC learnt to swim and the library will only survive if it is staffed by volunteers.

Esspee Sun 03-Apr-16 18:13:37

Write to your elected representative on the council explaining your views. If you have friends who feel the same way encourage them to do the same.

Whichplace Sun 03-Apr-16 18:13:40

Our local pool is the Olympic aquatics centre. It's around £5 for adults and £2.50 for children (you can also get various discounts and memberships). Seeing as it has amazing facilities, is spotless and beautiful, it's good value. I wouldn't be so keen to pay that for your average 70s rundown council pool though.

glasg0wmum Sun 03-Apr-16 18:17:36

have you got one of those budget gyms run by the large sports retail chain near you? We have and it works out much cheaper to join and get access to the pool and gym than pay a per use charge at our local council pool.

cleaty Sun 03-Apr-16 18:18:11

Councils have had massive cuts to their budgets. This is the result.

YouMakeMyDreams Sun 03-Apr-16 18:18:19

YANBU our pool would cost us £25 for the family of 5 to go. Thankfully we have a monthly scheme £29 a month that gives us access to the gyms locally and pools. It also pays for the Dc's weekly swimming lessons.
We go to the pools regularly we simply couldn't afford to go often or have the Dc in swimming lessons without it.

x2boys Sun 03-Apr-16 18:23:26

I can go swimming for free ds2 is disabled and all children in my lea can go swimming for free me and dh can also get in for free as his carers its a lovely pool too it's the jason Kenny centre in bolton all brand new and very clean.

GabiSolis Sun 03-Apr-16 18:36:52

That is quite expensive actually! My local council run pool is £4.30 I think, and £2.20 for children and concessions which I think is reasonable. This is home counties btw, so usually known for the expense of anything!

JenniferYellowHat1980 Sun 03-Apr-16 18:47:46

Our county's leisure management has been passed to a private company based the other side of the country. After nearly a year, I've yet to see any of the promised improvements and the only changes that have been made are scrapping of discounted memberships for LA employees and extension of the swimming scheme to 50 weeks a year (I happen to know this is their main income stream so it has been done purely for financial gain). You can't even see their prices online any more so I don't know if we'll be able to afford it when our old membership runs out soon.

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