Sandford Parks Lido receives over £300,000 to secure its future

Sandford Parks Lido in Cheltenham has secured thousands of pounds in funding that will help it to reduce its carbon emissions and energy usage.

By Dylan Robertson  |  Published
The lido is set to boost its energy efficiency, thanks to funding from Sport England and Cheltenham Borough Council.

Cheltenham's only outdoor swimming pool, Sandford Parks Lido, has been granted over £310,000 to fund projects that will improve its energy efficiency.

Sport England's Swimming Pool Support Fund (SPSF) has provided £306,000, while Cheltenham Borough Council has added £10,000, as part of the Cheltenham Zero Community Grant — aimed at helping to move the town towards net zero by 2030.

Two schemes will be funded with the money, namely the installation of solar panels in the car park which will also provide charging capabilities for electric vehicles.

A new cover for the children's pool is among the other additions set to be made, along with safety and accessibility improvements for cyclists and pedestrians.

As one of the UK's only heated lidos, these improvements will be key in keeping pool temperatures up, as well as keeping costs down.

Gemma Bell, director of finance and assets at Cheltenham Borough Council, said: 'I am delighted that the joint bid for funding from SPSF was successful and that additional funding was awarded by the Cheltenham Zero Community Grant — we know how well loved the lido is and how important it is to the town.

'This funding marks a significant step towards creating a more sustainable future for the Lido.'

Once these improvements are completed, the lido should be able to meet most of its electrical demand through solar power with solar panels also being installed on its plant room's roof last year.

Executive director of Sport England, Lisa Dodd-Mayne, said: 'Many pools have faced a real and significant threat to their survival this year, as local authorities and operators have battled the challenge of increased energy and wider costs, weakened reserves and difficulties with retaining staff.'

'We hope today’s funding announcement will enable more public pools to improve their energy efficiency to be more environ­mentally and financially sustainable, so they remain available for future generations to enjoy.'

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