Friends of Abbey Fields support keeping Kenilworth's outdoor pool but oppose bigger lido

Friends of Abbey Fields would like to keep the outdoor pool as it is, and do not wish for it to be expanded.
Friends of Abbey Fields would like to keep the outdoor pool as it is, and do not wish for it to be expanded.

The Friends of Abbey Fields have come out in favour of keeping Kenilworth's outdoor pool, but are against building a new lido due to worries over how busy it could get.

The future of the outdoor pool is in doubt after Warwick District Council announced its plans to change Kenilworth's leisure facilities.

One option being considered by the council is to replace the outdoor pool with an indoor training pool. The other option is to keep the outdoor pool as it is while improving the cafe and changing facilities.

Campaign group 'Restore Kenilworth Lido' felt the council's options are not ambitious enough. It would like to see a 25 metre outdoor pool along with a 'riverside cafe', which it says would make to outdoor pool more economically viable.

But the Friends of Abbey Fields committee said this would cause too much disruption and felt demand for the lido would be too high for Abbey Fields to cope with.

A spokesman for the committee said: "Unfortunately, whilst the Restore Kenilworth Lido campaign’s original aim was to simply keep the outdoor pool open it is now proposing a much more expansive and costly proposal which, we believe, could lead to the outdoor lido becoming a potential tourist attraction resulting in considerably increased footfall, more cyclists and a potential need for more parking.

"In addition, the build period and disruption will be long and significant.

"We believe the WDC option 2 (keeping the outdoor pool) is a much more sympathetic approach to the surrounding Abbey Fields. The outdoor pool will be retained and facilities enhanced.

"The local residents of Kenilworth will benefit the most and we believe the potential for increased visitors will be modest and manageable with the existing infrastructure."

The plans are out for public consultation until Monday November 19.

Restore Kenilworth Lido has been approached for comment.