Pyramids: Exeter should offer a higher standard
IN the teaching pool, a father and his daughter are laughing.
She probably aged three or four, is leaping into his arms from the side of the pool before they both collapse beneath the water and she resurfaces, doggy paddles to the steps, climbs out and repeats the process again.
In the main pool, the more proficient swimmers complete their lengths, turn and start again, while families and couples smile and enjoy the warm water (with no petting or bombing, of course).
Superficially, it is just like any other swimming pool. There's nothing too flashy but, to an extent, there doesn't need to be. It's perfectly functional.
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But should someone doing backstroke have to look at a ceiling where paint is flaking away? Should anyone using the changing rooms have to risk injury on door frames which are splintered and cracked, and see walls where large areas are left bare as tiles have fallen?
Constructed in the late 1930s and opened in 1941, Pyramids was given an Egyptian theme in the 1980s. Anyone giving it a closer inspection will see that it is tired and that is why, occasionally, the Echo hears tales of green water, and lathe and plaster plunging from height into the pool. There is no money for a major overhaul, only enough to keep it ticking over.
Is that good enough at a time when Exeter's stock seems to be at an all-time high, with developers and new businesses lining up to be part of the city?
The Pyramids has produced an Olympian in Liam Tancock, but imagine how many more could be produced if the city had a swimming pool which matched its overall ambitions.