Commonwealth Pool to close until middle of August

Edinburgh's Royal Commonwealth Pool will be closed to the public until the middle of August to allow the European Diving Championships to get under way.

Edinburgh's Commonwealth Pool will be closed until the middle of August. Picture: Lisa Ferguson
Edinburgh's Commonwealth Pool will be closed until the middle of August. Picture: Lisa Ferguson

The popular swimming pool, known locally as the Commie, is currently being prepped to hold diving events for the 2018 European Aquatics Championships.

Host city Glasgow will hold the majority of swimming events, but diving and open water swimming events will be held in Edinburgh and Luss respectively.

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The category-A listed facility’s diving pool and main pool were closed to the public on Saturday, with the entire building and car park to be made off limits between July 28 and August 16.

An Edinburgh Leisure spokeswoman said members have been upgraded to ensure they can use alternative facilities within the city centre.

Meanwhile, any cancelled classes will be relocated to other centres where possible, including Portobello High School.

All other gyms, swimming pools and fitness classes across the city will operate as normal.

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They added that Gracemount Leisure Centre will be open from 5.30am Mondays to Fridays from July 23 to allow customers to continue their early morning training during the championships.

An Edinburgh spokeswoman added: “Our members have had a lot of notice in regards to the closure and what the consequences of this will be.

“Obviously Glasgow is the host city but it is fantastic that the Commonwealth Pool has been chosen to host the diving.

“All staff have also been briefed so members can ask any questions at any centres or go on our website.”

The best divers from across the continent will compete in the Capital, from August 6-12, with many Edinburgh-born athletes taking to the water.

Jack Laugher, who won gold in the 3m synchro in Rio two summers ago, is joined in the 15-strong Great Britain squad by Commonwealth Games gold medallist Grace Reid and her fellow Edinburgh diver James Heatly, who took bronze on the Gold Coast.

Laugher said: “The pool in Edinburgh has some great memories for me as it is where I won my first Commonwealth title with Chris Mears. It will be great to return and face a new challenge.”

Heatly added: “The Commonwealths here in 2014 were incredible.

“It is always great to compete anywhere on the big stage and you always have your teammates and your family and friends coming to watch, but there is nothing better than a home crowd behind you. The Gold Coast was amazing, but it couldn’t quite match the roar in this building back in 2014.

“Competing here always brings back good memories and the Europeans are going to be another big event with a big home crowd.

“For me, it really is a home from home. It is not like competing somewhere else in Britain, this is my pool, I’m here every single day so it is going to be really special.”

The Commonwealth Pool will reopen to the public on August 17. In 2009, the swimming pool was closed to the public for almost three years as the building underwent a £37 million refurbishment.

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