Waterworld Up For Closure – Possible New Facility

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    The starting point for cost saving would be to pay Council Members on a per word contribution–based on the latest performance of these elected silent majority the amount paid out would probably drop by 75%.
    I would urge everyone to button hole their local Council Member no matter what political party and ask them what is going in in the Council or what is their view on a topic.
    At least if there was a system like in Parliament the electorate would soon find out what their representative is saying (or not)– here’s on from Parliament about Ian Lucas MP
    Tunisia: 5 Mar 2014: House of Commons debates – TheyWorkForYou



    Watching Wales News today its unbelievable that in the space of minutes we hear about Plas Madoc then that WAG has already spent £2m on proposing a car race track which will need them to stump up £30m.
    Another facility we don’t need in Wales, how does that help our kids, they can’t afford to drive around like that, apart from the odd one or two with either pretty well off parents or sponsorships from companies.
    So that’s two things that could help Plas Madoc and Waterworld, Welsh Assembly stop lending money for private housebuyers with Help2Buy and forget about building a race track.
    That’s £33.7m right there ( less already spent ).
    WAG needs to help local councils keep leisure facilities.



    @99DylanJones 12132 wrote:

    Yes the closure threat has come a step closure despite the group who are trying to set up a Trust have put forward proposals that show they can save over £400k in a year. With these type of savings how can the Council be trusted to run ANY of our service. I wonder if the Council Members and Officers will actually speak with this group or will it be too embarrassing for them to find that others outside of the Council can create a Financial Modeling that can achieve cost cutting whilst retaining services at a level unprecedented in Wrexham .

    Good luck to them but if they achieve that I’ve got some loaves & fishes I’d like them to take a look at.



    CADW response from investigation:

    Thank you for your e-mail of 16 January with a request to consider Wrexham Waterworld for listing.

    To qualify for listing, candidate buildings must be of nationally significant architectural or historic interest and must satisfy published listing criteria. Where these are met, the Welsh Ministers (in practice Cadw) are under a duty to list but cannot do so otherwise. Buildings are included for the interest of their architectural design, decoration and craftsmanship, including particular building types and techniques. Similarly, buildings that illustrate important aspects of the nation’s social, economic, cultural or military history are included for their historic interest. A building’s age and rarity are also relevant. The older a building is, and the fewer surviving examples of its kind, the more likely it is to be of sufficient historical significance to be listed and the approach adopted for twentieth century listing is to identify key examples of a range of building types i.e. industrial, educational, hospitals etc which broadly define the standard against which to judge proposed additions to the statutory list.

    Constructed in 1965-7 and designed by FD Williamson & Associates of Bridgend, the building’s most prominent feature is a large sweeping wave of parabolic roof, with the entrance to the western end and a fully glazed elevation opposite. In its main space under the roof, it incorporates three pools with a spectator gallery on the west side. This space is elevated above the ground so that the pool sits above ground and the pool level is effectively at first floor with the ground floor space used for the pool tanks and plantroom.

    In 1997 a major refurbishment was carried out by S&P architects. This altered and extended the entrance front and reconfigured the interior spaces, in particular the changing rooms, which altered the original segregated ‘basket’ system to a communal ‘changing village’ with lockers. The pool structures remain intact, but the diving tower was removed and replaced with a water chute. It was at this time, that the building was renamed Wrexham Waterworld, previously Wrexham Swimming Baths. Overall, the outward expansion of the original envelope to accommodate additional spaces has had a significant impact on the overall character of the building. The 1997 extensions have removed much of the original entrance and although the glazed tower and band are still visible the extensions dominate with roofs of contrasting curves and different heights and projections. The lower ends of the roof have also been infilled to accommodate plant and other functions.

    This building is of architectural and historic interest in terms of its design and use of a parabolic roof, and as an example of a post-war swimming pool. It also has rarity value as one of very few swimming pools constructed in the post-war period in Wales and is the only known example of this type of roof structure in Wales. However, the degree of later extension to the entrance front and infilling under the roof, and to a lesser degree the other internal reconfigurations, militate against the listing of this building as it does not survive in a condition which clearly displays its original design concept and use of the parabolic roof form.

    The merit of this kind of roof structure as an architectural expression of form is also questionable as they were more fashionable and widely used at the start of the 1960’s. Most of the other examples of simple parabolic roofs are earlier and although rare, Waterworld is not a unique example of this type of structure outside of the specific use for a swimming pool within the UK.

    In conclusion, Cadw does not consider that the listing criteria are met and the building cannot therefore be listed.



    Wrexham has experience of innovative refurbishment of older buildings, take St Giles
    and Victoria Schools .The Waterworld roof is unique in Wales as agreed by CADW and the interior design gives a large open plan area ready for numerous uses, surely this building is worth looking at for a different use before going straight to demolition .



    So whose idea was it to alter the original form & why?



    I agree it is a pity that the buikding is nkit regarded as worth saving but the isue for me is do yiou spend £100,000’s preservug a buidking or spend the same money on activities and serviuces. We cannot kep trying tio preenrve buidings for posoterity when all we are diing is saddling anither generation witrh the debts from bad planning that are made today.
    History has a sad past in creating items that are often beautiful in their own right but then there is no funding to have longevity.. Look at all the many churches chapels, civic buildings etc. What has happened now is they are either flattened or sold for residential property. Should our generation today leave a legacy to our children and grand children of unsustainable buildings whilst also withdrawing services and activities for them to take advantage of.



    How can CADW state that “this building as it does not survive in a condition which clearly displays its original design concept and use of the parabolic roof form”. The greatest part of the original concept was the parabolic roof itself which survives intact and complete, as far as the other alterations go many would seem reversible. Many other buildings have had historical alterations, I think as always with CADW and other heritage bodies they have issues with modern and recent additions being unworthy of listing, age is always revered (how many building have remained completely unaltered during their lifetime). Although I do agree with them that the refurbishment did take away from the building to a degree the overall concept remains and is a landmark of Wrexham. If this building is demolished you can be sure lots of people will be wondering why in the future, hopefully people will rally round to try and save it before it becomes another vegetable market, or any other if the long list of interesting buildings we have lost in Wrexham. And look at what replaces them.

    I agree with some that we have to move on and new building is a good thing, the problem in Wrexham is the lack of vision. Any new building is guaranteed to be a forgettable shed like all the others, which far from adding to the townscape have gradually eroded it. Would Wrexham dare to build anything as forward looking and exciting as Waterworld again…not likely.



    The Council own the building they could put it up for sale, however it would appear the agenda is to demolish it and borrow several million pounds to build an alternative. Memorial Hall next ? If the Council have a plan for the whole of that area the time has come for it to be published,surely they are not just going to demolish all these buildings before having plans drawn for thei replacement. Are there companies with orange in their corporate image waiting in the wings?



    Any change with the Memorial Hall will require Charity Commission approval as this is a Charity – with Council are the sole Trustee and are 460 days overdue filing accounts — I wonder if this is significant..

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