Last updated 12 April 2024

This dedicated webpage sets out what Fylde Council is doing in exploring all practicable options to support swimming provision in Fylde following the closure of the YMCA Kirkham Rural Splash. Below, you will find a timeline of activity since the closure and the steps being taken to look at all options to support swimming which includes links to relevant committee documents and press releases. This timeline will be updated as the project progresses, helping readers remain informed on the most recent developments.

Current Status

This section offers an overview of our current stage. For a detailed timeline of the Kirkham Pool closure, please refer below.

Expressions of Interest in acquiring and operating Kirkham facility

From Friday 12 April 2024, voluntary and community bodies can submit an Expression of Interest in acquiring and operating the Kirkham swimming facility using the dedicated online form. This submission period will run for six weeks, until Friday 24 May 2024.  Applicants that have made an Expression of Interest will be contacted by email when the Expression of Interest period closes and invited to prepare and submit business plans for their proposals to operate Kirkham Pool.

Fylde Council is facilitating the Expression of Interest process with the permission of YMCA Fylde Coast.

A voluntary and community body is defined in the Assets of Community Value (England) Regulations 2012.

If you represent a voluntary or community body and are interested in taking on the ownership and operation of Kirkham Pool, it is suggested you look through the Active Lancashire Sport and Leisure Provision Consultation and the Options Appraisal Study for Kirkham Pool in the Supporting Actions below.

During this period the Council’s Community Focus Scrutiny Committee and Executive Committee will be considering reports on the project to support swimming provision. Details of the agendas and reports can be found at the links below once published.

Government funding

Funding may be available from central government departments, local government, and government agencies for voluntary and community groups interested in potentially operating Kirkham pool:

Supporting Actions

Fylde Council has undertaken a range of actions to support continued swimming provision in Fylde. The closure of the YMCA Kirkham pool facility has heightened the need for immediate action, leading to the resolution of the Notice of Motion in October 2023. The council has since taken various steps to support continued swimming provision in the borough. Details of these actions and links to relevant documents can be found below.

To read the options below, please click the + icon to expand the text.

In response to the ongoing challenges faced by the YMCA Fylde Coast St Annes swimming pool, Fylde Council’s Executive Committee on 19 September 2023 approved a one-year additional subsidy payment of £59,189.

Read the full report here.

A notice of motion was put forward to the Full Council meeting on 2 October 2023. It was resolved that:

“In the corporate and local plan this Council seeks to maintain or encourage public swim provision. I propose that this Council, as a matter of urgency, supports that position and in light of the recent announcement by the YMCA to permanently close Kirkham Baths looks at all practicable options to work with partners and stakeholders to support that provision, and such options to be considered by the External Scrutiny Committee.”

Read the full report here.

Fylde Council and YMCA Fylde Coast submitted successful applications to both phases of the Sport England Swimming Pool Support Fund to assist the continued operation of the St Annes swimming facility.

A condition of the funding for both phases was that the pool in question be currently operational. Under this condition, only the St Annes swimming facility would be eligible for support funding.

07/11/2023

The Phase 1 Fund was targeted at swimming facilities facing elevated risk of closure due to increased cost pressures. Read more here.

23/03/2024

The Phase 2 Fund was solely for capital investment to improve the energy efficiency of facilities in the medium to long term. Read more here.

05/12/2023

Fylde Council’s Executive Committee approved the commissioning of Active Lancashire to perform a community-wide consultation initiative aimed at shaping the future of sport and leisure facilities in Fylde.

09/12/2024

The Sport and Leisure Provision Survey launched, inviting those living and working within Fylde to contribute their perspectives on a variety of topics relating to sport and leisure, with a particular focus on swimming opportunities.

05/04/2024

The survey findings and full report of the consultation conducted by Active Lancashire provide a thorough understanding of the challenges and perspectives concerning swimming provision in Fylde. Based on these findings, considerations have been developed to inform and support ongoing efforts to improve swimming provision in the area.

To assist interested parties who are considering submitting an Expression of Interest for the acquisition and operating of Kirkham Pool, the council is presenting potential redevelopment options for the site as a pool. The council has funded the commissioning of architectural drawings, mechanical and electrical design works, and related expenses as part of its resolution to explore all feasible options for swimming provision. This initiative aims to provide interested parties with a potential future vision of the pool, including current costs and feasibility assessments.”

04/01/2024

Consultants were approached to provide quotes for assessing the feasibility and costings of either recommissioning or enhancing the existing Kirkham Pool or constructing a new facility.

25/01/2024

Consultants were appointed to undertake an options appraisal study for Kirkham Pool. This looks at the feasibility and costs of four potential options. They are:

Option 1 – Minimum Level Proposal to re-commission existing facilities at Station Road.

Option 2 – Enhanced Proposal for Part Refurbishment (of the historic elements of the existing pool buildings) and replacement & remodelling of reception and dry facilities to include for gymnasium and café and enhancements to external works all following inclusive, access-for-all principles.

Option 3 – Proposals to maximise opportunities for new wet and dry leisure facilities at the existing site.

Option 4 – A new facility (of a nominal size) on a site to be determined based on price per square foot/metre within a range and with relevant exclusions and caveats relating variables and unknowns.

12/04/2024

Click the links below for the full report and costings.

Kirkham Baths Options Appraisal

Kirkham Baths Feasibility and Option Costs Summary

Mechanical & Electrical Engineering Services Report

YMCA Kirkham Pool Closure Timeline

Below, you will find a timeline of activity since the closure of Kirkham Pool which includes links to relevant committee documents and press releases. This timeline will be updated as the project progresses, helping readers remain informed on the most recent developments.

We are currently at Stage 5 of the timeline below.

2023
Stage 1: Kirkham Pool Closure

On the 10th August 2023, the YMCA Kirkham Rural Splash facility closed permanently due to significant structural damage caused by Storm Arwen in December 2021. Efforts to repair the damage and reopen the facility were hindered by the high costs involved, including replacing the damaged roof and addressing aging infrastructure issues. Read YMCA’s press release here Read our statement here

Stage 2: Submission of Disposal Plan

In accordance with the 2009 agreement under which YMCA Fylde Coast obtained the freehold ownership of the facility and continued to operate it, YMCA Fylde Coast submitted to Fylde Council for consideration a Disposal Plan on 10th November 2023, within the required three months of the closure event. The Disposal Plan sets out proposals for the future of the asset…Read More

Stage 3: Executive Committee

Fylde Council’s Executive Committee considered a report following the notice of motion at Full Council on 2 October 2023. The report approved expenditure to commission a major report from Active Lancashire to consult with key local stakeholders and existing swimming providers in Fylde to understand the existing position, potential challenges and opportunities for the short, medium and long term. This…Read More

2024
Stage 4: Disposal Plan Agreed

Following discussion, Fylde Council and YMCA Fylde Coast agreed the details of the Disposal Plan. The agreed plan will allow community groups to submit an Expression of Interest (EoI) in taking on the facility and allow time to develop a business plan for its operation. For more detailed information about the Disposal Plan and the potential outcomes, read the full…Read More

Stage 5: Expressions of Interest Open

From Friday 12 April 2024, voluntary and community bodies can submit an Expression of Interest in acquiring and operating the Kirkham swimming facility using the dedicated online form. This submission period will run for six weeks, until Friday 24 May 2024.  Applicants that have made an Expression of Interest will be contacted by email when the Expression of Interest period…Read More

Stage 6: Business Plan Submissions

Start of ten-week period for any charity, community group or local authority that have expressed an interest to work up business plans.