July 29 2014 Latest news:
Lizzie Dearden, Senior reporter
Tuesday, March 4, 2014
Boris Johnson will be visiting Wanstead’s temporary swimming pool on Thursday.
At the private event, the Mayor of London will be meeting children who are using the free facility at Wanstead High School.
It is available to schools in the day and residents in the evening until its 12-week run finishes at the end of April.
The pool opened amid continuing controversy over plans for a new facility in Redbridge.
Conservatives on Redbridge Council proposed a five-year leisure centre in Seven Kings but the Labour group argues they could build a permanent pool for a similar amount of money.
Since the Ilford Swimming Baths, in High Road, closed in 2008 there has only been one public pool for Redbridge’s 279,000 residents.
The waiting lists for swimming lessons at Fullwell Cross got so long that they were closed last year with 1,577 children waiting.
The temporary pool was built as part of Mr Johnson’s “Make a Splash” programme aiming to increase swimming in parts of London where facilities are limited.
In the last three years, temporary pools have been taken to 24 places around London and helped an estimated 21,500 learn to swim.