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3 April 2017

Mataura pool send off planned

With the Mataura pool due to close its doors for the last time at the end of next month, staff are looking for ways to give it a fitting send off.

This week the call went out for ideas on how to mark the pool’s closure. Ideas so far include free entry, a barbeque and a photo booth.

Gore Aquatics Services Manager Kim Peterson said it was good to get some constructive feedback.

“It’s about giving people a chance to trip down memory lane and remember the pool in its heyday.”

Staff will consider all suggestions and let people know in plenty of time what’s planned, she said.

The Council’s decision to close the pool followed extensive community consultation, and numerous attempts to boost patronage by direct marketing to user groups and numerous promotions.

“We wrote to various sports and community groups letting them know about the classes we provided at Mataura, offered discount vouchers and were always looking for ways of getting people involved.”

Despite this there was often only two or three people at some sessions, Ms Peterson said.

Staff also surveyed 104 people to find out what they wanted at Mataura. Only four surveys were returned.

“Those four told us cost was no barrier to using the pool, the opening hours were convenient and the pool was easily accessible,” Ms Peterson said.

Parks and Recreation Manager Ian Soper said the Council and Mataura Community Board hosted a community workshop in 2014, which included discussion around whether the pool was meeting the current and future needs of the community.

“What emerged from that was a vision for Mataura to have a recreational attraction unique to the Gore District.”

The workshop was followed by information sessions, held over three days in the Mataura community centre, where people were able to let the Council know their preferred options for a recreational facility in Mataura.

Future recreational opportunities for Mataura was also one of the key consultation points of the Council’s 2015 – 2025 Long Term Plan, Mr Soper said.

The pool has been a large part of Mataura’s history for over 50 years. However, today’s recreational expectations are a far cry from those of the 1960s.

“We are presently working with the community board on what will replace the pool.”

Mr Soper assured people it was intended to retain the plaques commemorating Mataura men who served in both World Wars and the Boer War and relocate them near the Mataura war memorial.

The pool will close on Sunday 30 April.

Gore District Council 29 Bowler Avenue Gore P: 03 209 0330 E: info@goredc.govt.nz