The new £26m Dover District Leisure Centre will be the first swimming pool in Kent to feature poolpod platform lifts, designed as a legacy of the 2012 London Olympics and Paralympics to improve pool access for people with disabilities and the less mobile. They will be fitted in both the competition standard swimming pool and learner pool at the new leisure centre which opens in early 2019.
The easy-to-use poolpod, developed by Poolpod Products Ltd. allows people to enter the pool via a submersible and mobile pool platform, operated by users themselves with an electronic wristband. Users can remain standing as they enter the pool, or use the custom submersible wheelchair which allows users to transfer from their own wheelchair in the privacy of the changing room. The platform takes around 20 seconds to enter the water, features three and five point harnesses, and can be stowed neatly at the side of the pool.
The new leisure centre will also feature improvements to accessible changing facilities for pool users, including a full Changing Places facility with hoist, along with wheelchair accessible showers, toilets, and lockers.
Cllr Trevor Bartlett, Cabinet Member for Corporate Property, said: “Swimming is one of the best ways to keep fit for all ages and abilities so improving pool access for people with disabilities and mobility issues was uppermost in our plans for the new Leisure Centre. We look forward to helping many more people lead active lifestyles thanks to these new accessible facilities.”
Josh Reid, Chief Executive Officer of Poolpod Products Ltd., said: "Being a part of creating cutting edge wet leisure facilities like the Dover District Leisure Centre is a key part of our mission to make water sports and leisure available to all sections of the community, and to help people enjoy an active and healthy life.”
Posted on 20 August 2018