Century Pool shuts early

Timaru's Century Pool will close tonight as swimmers are gradually switched to the new Caroline Bay Trust Aoraki Centre.

The Timaru District Council decided yesterday it would shut the 112-year-old facility tonight.

Council district services manager Ashley Harper said gear and the facility's five fulltime staff and part-timers would move to the new aquatic centre tonight.

The complex will be officially opened by Prime Minister John Key on July 27.

Mr Harper said Century Pool had reached its use-by date and was due to close on Friday anyway.

The early closure was prompted by a heating plant failure that he said the council was not prepared to keep spending money on.

He was also keen to get staff across to the aquatic centre to get them fully trained.

"It was always going to come one day and it turned up a week earlier than we thought it would.

"Its use-by date is here and we are decamping from tomorrow night."

The aquatic centre will be open to regular swimmers with a concession card from tomorrow 6am-8am and between the same hours from Monday to Friday next week.

Normal hours will begin when the aquatic centre is opened fully to the public on July 30.

"We know there are people who swim every day and we are trying to look after those people," Mr Harper said. "There will be some swimmers who go to Century at 10am . . . well, they've got to come in a bit earlier."

The council will consider a report on the future of Century Pool next Tuesday.

However, it was already decided it would not continue as a public pool, Mr Harper said.

The public are invited to a "walk-through" of the aquatic centre on July 28 and 29 where they can check out the facility but will not be able to swim.

The Timaru Herald