Fury over Rothesay Leisure Centre pool price rise

Rothesay Leisure Centre pool
Rothesay Leisure Centre pool

Argyll and Bute Council has been slammed for a whopping 62 per cent increase on the charge for swimming at Rothesay Leisure Centre.

A swim concession season ticket at the pool from Argyll and Bute Council body Live Argyll, has jumped from £126 last year to £203.88 for this new financial year.

David Coll contacted the Buteman last week to vent his anger about this sudden price rise, which Live Argyll has defended, stating that more than 90 per cent of membership users will see a price drop.

He said: “I am one of around 100 members who have a swim concession season ticket with Rothesay Leisure Centre.

“In 2018–2019 the cost of this season ticket was £126.

“I have now been informed by Live Argyll that the same season ticket, a swim concession for 2019-2020, will cost £203.88, or a direct debit of £16.99 a month.

“This £78 increase is unprecedented and flies in the face of the considered opinion of experts and health authorities that activity should be encouraged for all ages.

“I have asked Live Argyll to justify their position on this increase but did not receive a satisfactory response.

“I am not so much disappointed in the actions of Live Argyll in increasing the membership to Rothesay Leisure Centre pool for a swim concession by £78 as completely dumbfounded.

“I am forwarding my views to my elected councillor,MP and MSP for their information and action.

“I take this step with a heavy heart as I wish to fully support facilities on the island.”

In response an official at LiveArgyll said: “LiveArgyll has undertaken a price review of all of our leisure membership prices with a view to introducing a low cost model for access to all services.

“Unfortunately in a very small number of cases this has resulted in an increase to some membership categories.

“However, over 90 per cent of our users will see a reduction in membership costs together with increased access to all facilities.

“The £12.40 swim concession price and associated prepaid price was deemed unsustainable in the longer term as it required significant cross subsidy from other activity areas.

“Our £16.99 revised price is very much at the lower end of the price point when compared to similar organisations and still remains heavily subsidised.

“We no longer offer prepayment discount incentives on any of our leisure membership categories.

“To provide you with some further context, the actual cost per individual swim is approximately £23 based on associated costs and activity levels.

“In addition a LiveArgyll Leisure membership will now permit free unlimited access to 50 other leisure sites.

“LiveArgyll does not generate profits and all income receipts are re-invested into maintaining, operating and developing our facilities.”

LiveArgyll also questioned the number of people Mr Coll claims are affected, believing that less than 20 people have had this price rise at the Rothesay pool.