A bit of history
The Comberton swimming pool, so much a part of village life in the summer was constructed by a good deal of cooperative village and inter-village activity in the early 1970’s. Like many other pools, users paid for admission at the kiosk and a paid lifeguard was on duty. This system of operation ran into financial difficulties due to increasing costs, a reduction in funding from the county and a run of poor summers.
By the spring of 1981 there was a real danger that swimming at Comberton would come to an end. However under the leadership of Harry Brown the present club was established in order to provide community swimming along the lines already followed successfully for a number of years by other clubs in the area.
The club operates by inviting applications from families in the catchment area of the Village College. Members pay a subscription which is the same whether the family numbers one or ten, and this meets many of the costs of running the pool. The main contribution made by families is the volunteering of services. At all the club swimming sessions there needs to be on duty two "Safety Officers'', to supervise the pool and two "Administration Officers'' to handle admissions and back up the Safety Officers. At least one member of each family is required to assist in some officer capacity and it is important for plenty of volunteers particularly Safety Officers to be forthcoming if the club is to run all of the planned sessions.
The pool is usually open from mid May to mid September, and swimming sessions are run throughout each week according to a staffing rota prepared by the Rota Secretary usually twice in a season. The number of sessions available per week is fixed each year according to the number of qualified Safety Officers volunteering their services. The aim is to run nine two hour sessions per week.
For many years since the Club was formed the cost of running the pool has been divided between the Village College and the Community Swimming Club with the Club paying for the heating oil, a proportion of the treatment chemicals, provision of the pool covers and rollers, commissioning and decommissioning at the start and finish of the swimming season and some of the major plant and infrastructure costs. The Village College have looked after the day to
day testing of the water, filling of the pool at the start of the season, emergency telephone and electricity costs, a proportion of the chemical costs, and general site maintenance etc. In recent years with changes in the Village College management structure there has been a move to the Swimming Club paying a fixed annual fee for the use of the pool with all running costs being administered by the Village College.
It is often thought that the Community Swimming Club controls the use of the pool. This is not actually the case, the swimming club and the school are the dominant users of the pool, but it is also used by a number of other clubs on a regular or occasional basis. It can be hired by an individual or by another club. In all of these cases the Community Council of the Village College will levy a charge, and it is the Community Council which is ultimately responsible.