5,000 residents force council debate on pool closure

Chris Fernandez, TUSC prospective parliamentary candidate for Derby South

Derby TUSC is fighting Derby council’s closure of Moorways sports complex, including two swimming pools. Workers were told their jobs would go only one day before the press was. Over 5,000 people have signed an online petition, forcing the council to debate the issue.

The Labour council promised a new pool – in 2018. Thanks to the public response, the council now “may well look at” keeping the pool open for an extra year.

The Tories say that if elected they won’t close Moorways until the new pool is opened. But with cuts guaranteed to continue no matter who wins the general election, none of these promises mean anything without a strategy to take on the government.

The council has £7.1 million in uncommitted reserves. Cllr Alison Martin, cabinet member for leisure, told the Derby Evening Telegraph that the minimum costs for keeping the pool open another three years are only £1.6 million.

TUSC proposes setting a needs budget – a spending plan based on providing the jobs and services communities need, not on cuts. Having bought time by spending reserves, we could organise a serious campaign based on trade unions and communities to win that money back.

A movement led by rebel Labour councillors – who subsequently joined TUSC – saved a Southampton pool in 2012. Derby TUSC calls on all those opposed to the closure to come to our public meeting, and to join us in lobbying the council debate on the closure.

TUSC public meeting: Save Oaklands Pool! Saturday 24 January, 1pm at the Crown Hotel, 1 Chellaston Road, Derby DE24 9AD
Lobby of Derby City Council: Wednesday 28 January, 6pm in the Council Chamber, Council House, Corporation Street, Derby DE1 2FS