Partial reopening of pool planned for Monday

Parts of the Clickimin Leisure Complex pool building will reopen on Monday but it will be mid to late October before the main pool re-opens following the closure of the complex on safety grounds last month – a setback that will cost Shetland Recreational Trust an estimated £160,000.

The cafe, health suite, hydrotherapy pool, soft play area and waterside suite will be open to the public from 10am. The main pool, toddlers’ pool and river area will not reopen while work to replace bolts in the glazed roofing area is carried out.

It follows an engineer’s report and recommendations to SRT. The report identified the fault that forced the trust to close the pool as “stress corossion cracking” to bolts in the brackets which attach the glazing panels to the roof beams.

Paul Riddell and James Johnston of Shetland Recreational Trust
Paul Riddell and James Johnston of Shetland Recreational Trust

Explaining the move today SRT general manager James Johnston said that repairs to the glazed roof would cost £80,000 while the Trust would lose an estimated £80,000 in revenue, though some of this would be offset by savings in heating and staff costs and more business for Scalloway swimming pool.

He said: “These spaces can remain open until the contractor is finished (the current schedule estimates that this will take around three weeks) but will then have to close again to allow the scaffolding to come down and the pool to be re-filled before the pool can be fully reopened.”

A special discounted rate will be available to health suite customers for this period. The internal and external scaffolding will remain in place and all necessary precautions taken to make sure the open areas are safe, said Mr Johnston.

The pool complex was closed on 16th July as a precaution after part of a pen-sized 8mm bolt fell into the “river”.

The failure in the 20-year-old structure has been attributed to high humidity and high temperature within the pool, especially at roof hight where the temperature can reach 60 degrees celsius.

New stainless-steel bolts with 400 times the corossion resistance of the stainless steel bolts they are replacing are on order from the USA. Temporary fixings have been put in place to allow the partial re-opening of the complex.

Mr Johnston said that the cause of the failure would be considered more fully in due course and that it was too early to say if the SRT would seek any sort of compensation. He added that the trust would have to try and find ways to balance its books and that the cost of the repairs would come from the ongoing maintenance budget and planned works reviewed as a result of the extra cost.


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