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#552099 - 26th Jul 2011 7:53pm Leisure centres offer voucher incentives
Softy_Southerner Offline

Forum Guardian

Registered: 2nd May 2008
Posts: 4093
Loc: Back in Devon
Wirral Council’s leisure centres and pools are offering a series of incentives to encourage local people to swim and shape up over the summer months.

Wirral has signed up to a national scheme co-ordinated by the Amateur Swimming Association (ASA) that offers downloadable vouchers on a dedicated website that people can use to take advantage of offers at their local pool.

The website – www.swimmingoffers.org – has a range of vouchers on offer, including two swims for the price of one, 50% off admission to family swim sessions, 25% off adult swim lessons or £2 off a water-based class.

Once registered on the site, people can take advantage of any or all of the offers at their local Wirral Council run swimming pool.

The other scheme which the Council are operating themselves is based on the theme of ‘shaping up for summer’. It is a popular time of year for people to look to get themselves into shape in order to look their best on the beach, so in an effort to encourage more people to look at what’s on offer at Council-run leisure centres, they are being offered a free trial.

People can download a voucher from the Wirral Council website which they then take along to their local centre and sign up for a free, seven-day trial. This will entitle them to try out any available activity or class completely free of charge for one week.

http://www.wirral.gov.uk/news/26-07-2011/leisure-centres-offer-voucher-incentives

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#552343 - 27th Jul 2011 8:06am Re: Leisure centres offer voucher incentives [Re: Softy_Southerner]
Sallybear Offline
Smartchild

Registered: 5th Apr 2009
Posts: 587
Loc: Wirral
Great link thanks for this. I am still using all my bottle tops from Schweppes Abbey Well water for my free swims but they are nearly all used up. Thanks again for this.

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#552345 - 27th Jul 2011 8:13am Re: Leisure centres offer voucher incentives [Re: Softy_Southerner]
MattLFC Offline
Wiki Master

Registered: 14th Aug 2004
Posts: 22315
Loc: Moreton/Beirut/Mobile
Saw an advert for this the other day in the Globe. Nice to see the council spending our money wisely, whilst they are cutting back services for the elderly and disabled, I mean cheap swimming and adverts in the papers is certainly more important!

whistle

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#552351 - 27th Jul 2011 8:42am Re: Leisure centres offer voucher incentives [Re: MattLFC]
TheDr Offline
Forum Master

Registered: 23rd Feb 2010
Posts: 2631
Loc: Wirral
Originally Posted By: MattLFC
Saw an advert for this the other day in the Globe. Nice to see the council spending our money wisely, whilst they are cutting back services for the elderly and disabled, I mean cheap swimming and adverts in the papers is certainly more important!

whistle


People need to use these facilities, the costings involved in keeping them going vary very little if they are empty or full, what does change is the costing per head, so if the council can get more people in there then the value for money is shown, on paper at least, to have increased.

If they can get people into swimming then once these vouchers end one would hope that people would continue to go, and the Wirral Leisure Pass (or whatever it's called these days) the price can be quite reasonable, add into that the long term health benefits (less time off work, more chance of being in work, less chance of disability dependant living, lower health care outlay) then this "promotion" could work out very cheaply.

I don't know how far ahead the council have thought this, and if they didn't waste money that comes from a "different budget" because that's how they think it works, without realising that, whatever the budget, the initial funds all come from the same place, then many of these cuts wouldn't be happening. (There is a lot more to this but due to an impending Judicial Review I can't say much smile )

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#552546 - 27th Jul 2011 5:42pm Re: Leisure centres offer voucher incentives [Re: Softy_Southerner]
diggingdeeper Offline

Wiki Master

Registered: 9th Jul 2008
Posts: 10361
Loc: Birkenhead
Its far cheaper to have the kids doing something like this than repairing the amount of vandalism done by hoards of bored kids hanging around the streets.

Plus the reduced NHS costs if people are a bit fitter and healthier.
_________________________
In a time of universal deceit - telling the truth is a revolutionary act. George Orwell

When the debate is lost, slander becomes the tool of the loser. Socrates

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#552553 - 27th Jul 2011 6:20pm Re: Leisure centres offer voucher incentives [Re: Softy_Southerner]
MattLFC Offline
Wiki Master

Registered: 14th Aug 2004
Posts: 22315
Loc: Moreton/Beirut/Mobile
So we are all in favour of free swimming over providing essential services for the elderly and disabled.

Interesting; I hope you never come to rely on services that are vital for you to maintain a quality of life, and then have them taken away from you/placed under threat, just so the budget is protected for the minority of people who want to go swimming.

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#552556 - 27th Jul 2011 6:47pm Re: Leisure centres offer voucher incentives [Re: MattLFC]
TheDr Offline
Forum Master

Registered: 23rd Feb 2010
Posts: 2631
Loc: Wirral
Originally Posted By: MattLFC
So we are all in favour of free swimming over providing essential services for the elderly and disabled.

Interesting; I hope you never come to rely on services that are vital for you to maintain a quality of life, and then have them taken away from you/placed under threat, just so the budget is protected for the minority of people who want to go swimming.


No, we are looking at both immediate and long term benefits.

The swimming pools are open anyway, it doesn't matter if you one person in there or fifty, if it can take fifty it will still be fully staffed in case that number come in, so the "free" voucher actual costs are minimal, the newspaper advert essential so that people know about it.

Long term care for the elderly and/or disabled is expensive, but if just one person takes up the swimming and keeps to it you may have one less person who needs that care, or needs it much later, so allowing more funds to be used for those that need it.

You say the minority who want to go swimming, that does raise two questions, if we only have a minority that swims, surely this scheme is a good thing as it encourages increased attendance, and if the swimmers and their like are in the minority does that mean that our elderly and disabled are in the majority ?

Originally Posted By: MattLFC
Interesting; I hope you never come to rely on services that are vital for you to maintain a quality of life...


How do you know I don't? How do you know I am not one of the people supplying that service? Maybe I have a much closer and personal understanding of this situation than you, who knows, you made an assumption, and we all know what they breed smile

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#552569 - 27th Jul 2011 7:09pm Re: Leisure centres offer voucher incentives [Re: Softy_Southerner]
MattLFC Offline
Wiki Master

Registered: 14th Aug 2004
Posts: 22315
Loc: Moreton/Beirut/Mobile
So what you are saying is that swimming is the answer to all lifes problems (healthwise)? It could be argued that there is an adverse effect if it helps you live longer, in that it will inevitably cost us more money in the long-term (pension, healthcare, other benefits etc).

You will never get me to agree with the council or indeed any public fund, providing selected lesuire and entertainment services for free to the minority whilst we are in such deep dodo. If people can't afford to go swimming, or moreso would rather spend their hard-earned (and not so hard-earned) down the Pub or on a new pair of shoes, that is their choice, I pay for everything in my life, and I expect to do so, I don't expect the government or council to start paying my electric and automotive costs (both of which are far more essential for my own well-being and cost-saving to the economy than offering the odd free/reduced-rate swimming scheme).

If the minority go swimming already, there is a reason for that; no amount of offers will entice people to suddenly take up something they have little interest in participating in, and unless they were to permenantly reduce/remove the cost of swimming, I doubt many, if anyone, would continue once the offer has finished. You only have to look at what happens everytime a sporting event is on, to notice how quickly novelties wear off (in Summer 2003 for instance, for two weeks or so following Englands triump in the World Cup, every kid on the street thought it was coold to be playing rugby - that lasted 2 weeks, after which, they went back to playing football as per ususal).

It still boils down to what is more important, to me, providing essential services to the elderly and disabled is far far more important than offering reduced-rate or free swimming. As I say, if someone wants to swim, they have the choice to make, either go to the Pub, buy thier new shoes, or go for a swim. If someone is incapable of doing some tasks in life, through diability or age, and just needs a little help and support, that is not a choice, and these vulnerable people should be the priority in this day and age of austerity.

It just smacks to me of "times are going to be tough for everyone" - but not if you like swimming. In these times of deep financial cuts to essential public services, it should be about getting our priorities right, and targetting the money to where it is needed most, not to shite like swimming, tennis etc...

Meanwhile, I shall be expecting the council to start offering free Theramin lessons, because I have one sitting in my flat, but have no idea how to play it. Sod the elerly, my Theramin is obviously more important...

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#553364 - 29th Jul 2011 10:06am Re: Leisure centres offer voucher incentives [Re: Softy_Southerner]
paxvobiscum Offline
Forum Addict

Registered: 31st May 2011
Posts: 1131
Loc: Upton
Some on Wiki may not know that if you are or have been in Armed Forces either as Regular or Reserve that you get a free Leisure Pass for Wirral Council Facilities(I am not sure how much it covers). My Son-in-Law in Reserve Paras goes to Gymn free, and my first husband who had paid for years to go to gymn recently got one, because he did National Service. I think you can go to One Shop with proof of Discharge or present Forces involvement.

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