Paddling pool makes waves

Councillors join campaigners at Rivelin Valley paddling pools whose opening hours are being reduced
Councillors join campaigners at Rivelin Valley paddling pools whose opening hours are being reduced
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The sun will shine on the official unveiling of newly refurbished paddling pools in Sheffield tomorrow - but parents and childminders want the opening hours to be longer.

Rivelin Valley paddling pools, first opened in 1951 to celebrate the Festival of Britain, have been revamped at a cost of thousands of pounds.

There’s a splash pad with brightly-coloured water jets, and sprays, interactive play features and a new filter.

One of the pools has a wheelchair accessible ramp, and special aqua wheelchairs available for loan to disabled people.

The pools will be opened officially with a fun day and free activities tomorrow, Saturday from 11am to 4.30pm.

Coun Isobel Bowler, cabinet member for leisure, said: “I am sure this wonderful new play area will be really popular and I hope lots of people will come along to take part.”

The pools will be open 11am to 5pm every day during the school holidays - and the same hours at weekends during term times.

But parents wish the pools could be open seven days a week all the time.

Childminder Jo Osborne, aged 34, from Walkley Bank, who looks after eight toddlers, said: “Why can’t the council have the pools open all the time? The pools get very busy at weekends and in the holidays, but if they were open in the week in term times I could take my children when it’s quieter.”

The council said health and safety rules mean the pools can open only when officially supervised.

Head of parks David Hargate said: “We are opening the pools for longer over the summer holidays, when children will be able to enjoy the paddling pools every day from 11am until 5pm.”