March 16 2014 Latest news:
Joshua Fowler, Reporter
Thursday, January 30, 2014
The proposed £2million swimming pool set for Seven Kings could last for just two years, according to a Labour councillor.
Speaking at an area four committee meeting in Sinclair House, Woodford Bridge Road, Clayhall last week, Cllr Debbie Kaur-Thiara (Lab, Aldborough) raised concerns over the life-span of the used tank set for Seven Kings station car park in High Road.
She said: “I have concerns over whether the pool will last as long as we’re being told. If the pool was bought new it would last for five years, but it’s second-hand and could only last for two years.”
Cllr Gurdial Bhamra (Lab, Clayhall) also spoke to label the plan as poor “value for money” at the meeting.
He also suggested the pool, which he believed will have “very high running costs”, could be an attempt by Conservative councillors to gain votes with an election approaching.
He said: “The life span of the average pool is 30 to 40 years, but this proposed one is just five years.
“The last pool closed in Seven Kings in 2008 and what was done about it? Nothing.”
Redbridge Council leader, Cllr Keith Prince, refuted the claims made by the Labour councillors.
He accused his fellow area four councillors of “making up figures to make a point”, and claimed the council couldn’t afford a new pool in 2008 because “the country was bankrupted by the Labour party”.
He added: “What I find incredible is this borough is in desperate need of a second pool.
“The proposed plan will cost around £2,000,000 and last for five years. To build a cheap permanent pool at this time would be poor economics. It’s far better to have something we can move if we need to.
“I don’t know where Labour get their figures on high costs. At the moment it will cost us £100,000 a year to run. That’s about £1 per household.
“We currently have 1,000 people on the waiting list to learn to swim. It’s literally a matter of life and death.”