The new Andrew Boy Charlton Indoor Swim Centre opens at the end of the month and yet Councillors still have not been provided with a business plan, despite repeated requests from the Independent Councillors.
At a recent Planning & Strategy meeting, consistent questions by Councillor Candy Bingham querying the costs of the new centre, and projected revenue, were met with a tirade by the Mayor Jean Hay that "such consistent negative comments are a disgrace". But the answers still have not been provided nor a business plan provided.
"One has to wonder how the staff have come to the conclusion that a small gym operating in the centre, will attract hundreds of memberships at $2,776.40 pa with the cost of classes then to be at an extra fee. Clearly comparisons with other local gyms (of which there are about 15 at last count) has not been undertaken otherwise the fee proposed would be halved", Clr Bingham said.
Apparently the Council will run all programs at the Swim Centre with the cost of lane hire expected to be prohibitive to existing community groups and established squads. Participants are also required to pay an entry fee. Warren Riley, who has been swimming at the Boy Charlton Pool since it opened is dismayed. He and fellow
"While I have been vocal about whether the community really needed a new indoor swim centre of this size, nonetheless, now that we have it, it is important that it is accessible to the whole community. After all, we now have six pools, a steam room, sauna, spa and gym as well as a creche. Surely it makes sense to provide these facilities at a reasonable price to ensure that the swim centre remains profitable and popular", Clr Bingham concluded.
Will you use the new swim centre?
Candy Bingham, Deputy Mayor, Northern Beaches Council. Background in marketing, public relations & community engagement. Author of five business books. Former Lady Mayoress of Sydney. Aka Candy Tymson.