New lockers for pool

STONEHAVEN Open Air Pool is on track to replacing “outdated, dysfunctional” lockers in the changing rooms, after securing funding from Aberdeenshire Council’s top up budget.

The Friends of the Open Air Pool had asked for £4,000 towards the cost of the new lockers, which are described as “more in keeping with the art deco style” of the pool. The total cost of the project is £13,000, and the Friends have secured funding from fundraising events and donations.

The Kincardine and Mearns area committee heard on Tuesday that the top up budget for 2011/12 had only £2,755 remaining, but members agreed to grant this to the Friends of the Pool, with a promise that the remaining £1,245 will be made up when the funds become available.

Mike Robins from the Friends of the Pool told members that replacing the lockers had become a priority as they were threatening the four star tourism rating of the facility.

Only one member suggested an alternative use for the remaining money. Councillor Paul Melling asked his colleagues to consider the possibility of splitting the cash equally between the 13 community council’s in Kincardine and Mearns, but he received no support from his fellow councillors, who were all agreed on giving the funding to the Friends, pointing out that it was they who had actually applied.

Councillor Wendy Agnew said: “You need to apply for funding from the top up budget - no one else has. The Friends of the Pool do sterling work and I support this. I have for a long time thought that the lockers looked a bit shabby. The volunteers put in a huge amount of work at the pool.”

Councillor George Carr agreed, adding: “Each community council is aware that they can apply for this and I am sure they would have if they needed to. Those who apply for the top up get an equal opportunity and there is no bias.”