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Community input being gathered on indoor public swimming pool for Shelburne County

Public input is being sought for a feasibility study on a potential indoor pool to be located somewhere in Shelburne County.
Public input is being sought for a feasibility study on a potential indoor pool to be located somewhere in Shelburne County. - Contributed

About 50 people attended the first public consultation session for a feasibility study that will look at the possibility of building an indoor public swimming pool in Shelburne County.  
Spearheaded by the volunteer Sou’West Recreation Complex Advisory Committee and backed by a $5,000 grant from the Municipality of Barrington, A.W. Consulting (Amy Woolvett) has been contracted to conduct the feasibility study and create a business plan.
The meeting, held on Nov. 13 at Forest Ridge Academy in Barrington, went really well, Leslie Hobbs, vice-president of the committee, said in an interview, with input received on various facets of such a project including location, potential uses and users, health and sports benefits, and if the will is there to pay a small tax levy to pay for the development of an indoor aquatic facility.
Hobbs said the same type of input is being gathered through an online survey, with plans to hold another public consultation in the Shelburne area. 
Hobbs said part of the consultant’s work for the report is finding out exactly what the community would like to see from such a project, so they are hoping to reach as many people as possible. 
The lack of an indoor public pool facility on the southwestern shore of Nova Scotia that is adequate to serve the needs of residents and athletes is the driving force for the committee, said Hobbs.  
“In Shelburne County, there’s absolutely no indoor pool so families here often have to drive to Yarmouth and use the YMCA or Bridgewater to use the LCLC and it’s a long way to go if you’ve got kids who want to take swimming lessons, or if your older and looking for an easier way to exercise,” said Hobbs. 
“Here in southwest Nova almost everyone is or knows a fisherman. Water safety is a huge thing here so it would be nice to have somewhere to offer programs that focus on that for people who work on the water,” she added.
For athletes, there are no competition level pools in this end of the province, added Hobbs. 
Hobbs said an indoor public pool is “one of those investments you can make in your community that is good for people of all ages and abilities.”  
The feasibility study is slated for competition next April. Anyone interested in taking the survey can find it online via the Sou’West Recreation Group Facebook page. 

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