The official opening ceremony was held on Saturday 14 April at 12.30 with refreshments, speeches, and performances by the local children’s choir, followed by a raffle draw – thanks to local businesses’ prize donations.
The much-needed new extension houses a large boys’ changing area, with separate toilet; a disabled changing room / wet room and toilet and an integrated office.
The extension was made possible thanks to grants from Landfill Communities Fund through Tarmac and another through The Exton Trust. A further generous donation enabled us to complete the building process; thanks to John Kirkland, whose late wife Sheila was a regular Aqua Fit user; she asked for all donations in her memory to be sent to Wirksworth Swimming Pool. It financed the pool’s full air con system, enabled the upgrade of the plant room to be more efficient, with a new boiler to improve running costs and for the extension to be finished to a high standard. In recognition of this wonderful kindness the staff and trustees have decided to rename the pool: ‘Sheila Kirkland Community Pool’.
Phase two of our building project will be funded by a grant from Sport England and will see the pool’s broken windows replaced and the ladies’ changing area upgraded.
Thank you to everyone in the local community who has supported our lovely pool, enabling us to continue to deliver life-saving skills and provide a service to benefit all of Wirksworth and surrounding areas.
Over recent years, Wirksworth Swimming Pool has been generously supported by donations from the community. In particular, two local benefactors have supported the pool with significantly more funding than anybody else. It would be safe to say, that without the support of Sheila and John Kirkland, the pool would not be the fantastic community facility it is today.
Their support has meant that we have a new ventilation system, a new circulation system, new pumps, filters and, very shortly, a new extension.
Sadly, Sheila Kirkland passed away in 2016, and in recognition of the contribution made by Sheila and John Kirkland, the Pool Trustees and staff would like to rename the pool the Sheila Kirkland Community Pool, Wirksworth.
Andy and local residents, Jane Aitman, Peter Riddle, Kirstie Lyne and Les Biggs, host an annual event in the town. Visitors follow a trail around approximately 20 gardens and courtyards viewing intriguing sites that are often hidden from public view. Money raised during the event is gifted to local charities and Wirksworth Swimming Pool is very pleased to be one of those to receive a donation from the last event.
Andy comments: “We try to ensure the money raised in Wirksworth supports local charities or special projects that involve local people. Our next Hidden Gardens and Courtyards event is on the 27th and 28th June between 12-5pm and we look forward to welcoming more visitors to the town and being able to make further donations to local groups.”
In addition to this donation, Wirksworth Swimming Pool has also received money from the Friends of Wirksworth Swimming Pool fundraising group. The group recently held a raffle, tombola and balloon modelling stall at the town’s Farmers’ market. The event was a great success raising a fantastic £1107.80 for the pool. Many local businesses and pool users donated prizes, so thanks go to everyone involved for their support.
Fleur Fern, of Wirksworth Swimming Pool comments: “We are lucky, there is such great support in Wirksworth for the pool. We are only a small charity and put every penny donated to good use. When the Hidden gardens team called about their donation the boiler powering our showers had just broken. Their money has helped fund a new boiler, which all our pool users appreciate! As well as everyday projects we also have aspirations to extend the pool building and improve facilities and the money donated by the fundraising team will be split between current and future projects to ensure we invest for the future”.
As a self-funding charity, Wirksworth Swimming Pool is always looking for fundraising support and ideas. If you can help, please contact us on 01629 825704.
Wirksworth Swimming Pool was recently nominated for an award at the inaugural Foundation Derbyshire Award Ceremony.
Out of 250 plus groups awarded funding through Foundation Derbyshire, over the last year, just 12 local community organisations were put forward for awards, Wirksworth Swimming Pool being one of the 12, thanks to a nomination by The Michael and Annie Hall fund panel.
Writing to Wirksworth Swimming Pool, a member of Foundation Derbyshire commented: “Those shortlisted were selected because the panel felt they showcase the best of what the voluntary and community sector achieves here in Derbyshire.”
From the shortlist of 12 groups, six were selected to win full awards, at a ceremony which took place on Thursday 5th February 2015 at Derby Museum & Art Gallery. Sadly Wirksworth Pool didn’t make the final six, but we are grateful to the panel for their support and recognition of our work.
As a nominated group, the short film above, by John Felix, was made to showcase our charity.