HISTORIC open-air swimming pool Holywell Mead will be reopened next month.
Swimmers will be able to splash around in the Grade II Listed pool on High Wycombe’s Rye from Friday, May 27.
The pool was closed two years ago by Wycombe District Council bosses in a bid to save the authority £66,000 a year – leading to a vigorous campaign by residents and the Holywell Mead Pool Group.
But the facility, first opened in 1957, will be reopened in time for the second bank holiday in May following a revamp by Fusion Lifestyle, which secured a 50 year lease for the site following a tender process last year.
Neil Bailey, chairman of the pool group, said he was “thrilled” the pool would be up and running for the summer but pleaded with WDC to ensure the refurbished pool was ‘properly promoted’.
He said: “I’m thrilled, it’s excellent news and great for the town.
“The group shall definitely be supporting the opening day and we’re meeting with Fusion Lifestyle to talk to them in detail about their plans for the facility.
“There was very little marketing done by the council on the old model and I don’t think many people knew much about it – there are some very simple, cheap ways of getting people informed and interested, and the footfall up.”
Fusion will invest about £1m to refurbish the facility, with phase one – a refreshed, heated pool and new changing rooms – ready for the May reopening.
Phase two will then begin in the autumn, with a renovation of the pool building and Rye Centre to incorporate a gym, exercise studios and a cafe.
The tennis courts will also be upgraded to include a multi-purpose games area during the work, which is expected to be concluded in spring 2012.
Elaine Jewell, head of community services at WDC said: "We are delighted that the pool will soon be up and running again.
“With the plans for additional facilities to be available next year, Holywell Mead definitely has a very exciting future in store."
As an independent registered charity, Fusion reinvests any surplus income made back into the facilities and activities it manages.
Peter Kay, Fusion's CEO said: "The team has put an enormous amount of effort into getting the pool ready in a short space of time and we're looking forward to welcoming swimmers back over the summer."