Hounslow Council To Tackle 'Dire Standards' At Local Leisure Centres

'Corrective action' at New Chiswick Pool and Brentford Fountain Leisure Centre

Hounslow Council has issued a statement following criticisms about the facilities at Brentford Fountain Leisure Centre and New Chiswick Pool. A petition set up by local resident Charlotte Kimpton has gathered over 150 signatures, calling on the Council to improve the 'dire standards' at both facilities.


Petition to improve standards at local leisure facilities

Multimillion Pound Facility To Replace Fountain Leisure Centre

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Cllr Samia Chaudhary, Cabinet Member for Leisure Services at Hounslow Council commented: “The London Borough of Hounslow is concerned to hear about the dissatisfaction with the service and facilities maintenance in two of its leisure facilities. LBH is working closely with its operator Fusion to ensure corrective actions are undertaken to resolve these concerns, whilst also having plans in place to bring about longer term improvements. Feedback from our customers is encouraged at all times and we use these comments to continually improve the service offer at our leisure centres.

“Fusion has robust systems and processes in place to identify and rectify any issues as quickly as possible on site. Cleanliness is of the upmost importance and in light of recent feedback, cleaning schedules have been updated to ensure standards are kept at the high standards of cleanliness we expect”.

The Council is still exploring options for renewal at this site and in the meantime the equipment at the facility will continue to be maintained. Some of the issues highlighted at Brentford Fountain Leisure Centre have been repaired, however the site is being inspected again to pick up any further current issues. Recently there was an issue with the temperature control at the Chiswick Pool which affected services for a period of 10 days whilst a replacement part was sourced; this repair is now complete and the site is back in full use. We apologise for the impact this delay had on services during this period and we will continue to work to ensure any outages are kept to an absolute minimum.

"We recognise that Lifeguard shortages impacts upon the provision of pool services however public safety is of paramount importance. Unfortunately there is a national shortage of lifeguards spanning across all operators. To address this shortage, Fusion has funded lifeguard courses and promoted the role in order to fill vacancies; following the recent success of the first course where 11 lifeguards were recruited, further courses are planned this year.

Rust in the roof above the training pool at Brentford Fountains. Picture: Charlotte Kimpston

Charlotte Kimpston says she has been lobbying for improvements for some time and has had two meetings with representatives of Hounslow Council and management company Fusion Lifestyle to resolve the problems.

According to Mrs Kimpston some of the continuing issues include a leaking roof at Brentford Fountain Leisure Centre, unusable lockers, security issues, staff shortages resulting in cancelled swimming lessons, broken or filthy gym equipment, no lights in the showers and inconsistent pool or air temperatures. Despite all the problems she lists, she says that membership fees continue to increase ever year.

Hounslow Council did consider a £68 million redevelopment of the Brentford Fountain Leisure Centre back in 2017 with funding provided from the sale of the site to developer. Their plan was to move the facility to the adjacent Citroen site with housing above, developed in partnership with London and Quadrant.

A disabled shower that has been without a curtain or shower for some time at Brentford Fountains. Picture: Charlotte Kimpston

A Hounslow Council cabinet meeting in 2016 was told that the 30-year-old facility would not be fit for purpose in another few years. It was planned to complete the new centre by 2021 but the scheme fell through.

The 2.2 acre site where the current centre is situated, which also includes a car park, would be of considerable value if released for residential use, use way above its last valuation of £3.85million in 2009.

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August 8, 2019

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