• In at the Deep End Issue 68: April 2015

  • Disclaimer:

    Items submitted for inclusion in “In at the Deep End” are assumed to be free from copyright restrictions. In similar mode there is no objection to readers using anything that appears in this Newsletter. A mention of the “Thamesdown Hydrotherapy Pool” would be appreciated.


As good as new.
In February work started on the Changing Room ceilings. This caused some disruption but thank-fully the pool managed to stay open. At first the builders enjoyed coming inside to work as it was lovely and warm, but soon the heat became too much and they wished they were outside again! The builders had to take down the existing ceil-ing and insulation, let the joists dry out and check to see if there was any more damage. For-tunately the joists dried very quickly due to the warmth of the building and no more damage was found so work could commence. The ceiling was dropped by a couple of inches to give an air cap that wasn’t there before. The insulation used this time was twice as effective but only half the thickness of the previous insulation, giving even more of an air gap. Then it was boarded up and plastered to seal all the holes to stop any con-densation going up into the roof. It was all painted white (although Neil quite liked the Salmon pink of the plaster!) Taking two weeks to complete the finished article it looks very good. We would like to thank Millbrook Construction for their excellent work. Job done!


Quote from Spike Milligan:-
Money can’t buy you happiness…… but it does bring you a more pleasant form of misery.
Quote from Alex Levine:-
Only Irish coffee provides in a single glass, all four essential food groups: alcohol, caffeine,sugar and fat.


Dates for the Diary.
Here are some important dates for your diary. With your support it will all be much more fun.
Quiz Night on Friday 17th April at Swindon Rugby Club, Greenbridge Road.
Costs £3 each with a maximum of 6 per team. Starts at 7pm and there is a prize for the winning team.
Kentwood Choir Concert on Saturday 18th July at Bath Road Methodist Church
Costs £5 each and starts at 7pm
For more information and booking on both events please call the pool on 01796 496002.
Please keep a look out on our Facebook page for more events.


Posters (This is a plea from Neil Montgomery – Pool Manager)
As a Charity we are always on the scrounge, so why change the habit of a life time! So here we go! In the past I have asked for your time and money, this time I would like to know if anyone could help to distribute posters promoting the pool. There are still so many more people out there who we could help but they just don’t know we are here. The posters could go anywhere you think suitable, i.e. shops, hair salon’s, cafes or even groups you might attend. If you can help please call and we can send you some posters or just pop into the pool and pick some up.


Be Strong.
Plea from Neil (Pool Manager)
In days of old I’m sure there was a saying that your only as strong as the support behind you. The Thamesdown Hydrotherapy Pool is no different. Over the years we have had a strong committee to help steer the pool in the right direction. This is the case today with a dedicated team of volunteers on the committee supporting me and the staff to give you the best facility available. But the time has come when we need to bolster the team, introduce new blood with different ideas and enthusiasm. Its only about four meetings a year plus an AGM and a few emails here and there. No matter how big your input, large or small, it will be very valuable to us. If you think this is something you would like to join or would like some more information, please just come down to the pool and speak to me or call me on 01793 496002


Do You Know What Hydrotherapy is?
This is the question people ask us and maybe ask you? So hopefully this following information will help. Hydrotherapy is a multitude of things for different people.
Factually it is the water temperature that deciphers if you are a hydrotherapy pool or not, The water has to be a constant 34 degrees or above.
The larger part of the word hydrotherapy is therapy and that’s what people get from using our pool. They have conditions, injuries or ailments that are soothed, relaxed and treated in our water. Some of these problems are temporary and some are permanent. Both benefit from the warm water in different ways.
For people who are in wheelchairs all day, the chance to stretch out and have the freedom of movement is not only good for their muscles, but also good for their mind to have the feeling of being unrestricted and free. Also they do not have the risk of getting cold. Other people see the pool as a road to recovery or to keep their problems at bay. There is also the extra added bonus of the social therapy which sometimes gets forgotten.
Overall hydrotherapy is the complete package or you can say as we do at the pool – Hydrotherapy is awesome!!!


Some cricket jokes as yes its that time of year again!
It was a case of till cricket us do part for Mildred and Michael Rowley of Wolverhampton in 1981. Mrs Rowley was granted a degree nisi on the grounds of her husband’s unreasonable behaviour. She complained that he was ‘cricket mad – it was not just a hobby – it was a total obsession’. Mr Rowley was unable to attend the divorce hearing because he was— playing cricket. Asked for a comment, he replied: ‘I cannot stop…we
The Vicar of Much Slaughter in the Cotswolds sometimes played cricket for the village side on Sunday afternoons. Fortunately, the ground was close to the church, as on one occasion he was late for his own eve-ning service. He had been batting rather well and only realized the time when an impatient member of the con-gregation rang the church bell to summon him from the crease. The Vicar made a spectacular exit then en-trance by hurdling a boundary fence, sprinting up the church path and dashing into the pulpit hastily donning cassock and collar over his cricketing ‘whites’.
He then said” Let us play”


Here is some General Knowledge Quiz
1) In which city did Roger Bannister run the first sub-four-minute mile in 1954?
2) In which country do swallows migrate to when they leave Britain for the winter?
3) In fashion, what do the initials DKNY stand for?
4) How many x chromosomes do women have?
5) Which country is the natural habitat of the emu?
6) Who asks the quiz questions in ITV’s ‘The Chase’
7) In 1997, who announced he was leaving the BBC to stand as an independent candidate in the Tatton constituency in Cheshire.
8) Who became First Minister of Scotland after Alex Salmond’s resignation?
Answers on the last page!


Big Big Thank you’s from Neil.
The financial year has come to an end, Ooh how did we do? Well in truth I don’t know yet until the treasurer counts up all the pennies, so I can’t exactly say. From all the donations we have received over the year I will be very surprised if we didn’t break even this year. That’s with all the money spent on the building work and replacing old equipment.
Stratton St Margaret Parish Council gave us £4,000 towards our ceiling appeal We also received a contribution to our appeal from the Swindon NASS group.
We had two big donations in one weekend and they were from Eldene Primary School who had raised £2259.75 and £753 from the North Wilts Hash Har-ries Santa Dash.
However I cannot forget all the other donations from some very kind people, no matter how big or small they all count and are very valuable to us.
So from all the staff and committee, we want to say a very big thank you.


Equipment Failure’s.
Here are a few items we have had to spend our money on:-
We all know that nothing lasts forever!
Our pool dosing equipment is an example of this. Our dosing system that we have, controls the amount of chemical that goes into the pool to make it safe to swim in. It runs 24 hours a day, 7 days a week and has done so for over 20 years. So ours has done very, very well. Over the years bits and bobs have been replaced and changed but now the electronics are starting to fail and now its on its last legs. A re-placement now costs over £3,000! Expensive yes, but vital to the running of the pool. This is being replaced very soon.
The cash register gave up working a few weeks ago and so a shiny new one was bought . You might have already noticed it. It is working much quicker than the old one and the cash draw comes out very fast! If you get in its way you can receive quite a wallop like Jan found out the other day! A bit like a scene from Open all Hours with there old till. The Chair hoist in the Jacuzzi hydraulic system failed and we had to purchase a new part at a cost of over £500. The pool has been very lucky this time as we have had a very kind donation to cover the full amount of the cost and fitting. We all appreciate this and say a very big thank you.


As we are in April now, here are details of some April Fool’s Day Hoaxes:
April Fool’s hoaxes have a tantalising history. One question is: could there be a common origin, or has the April Fool’s idea arisen spontaneously in different countries in different eras?
Joseph Boskin had an article entitled ‘The origin of April Fool’s day’ published in Associated Press in 1983. The article reported that the mystery of the ori-gin of April Fool’s Day had finally been solved.
Joseph Boskin, a History professor at Boston University, had discovered that the April Fool’s celebration begun during the Roman Empire. A court jester had boasted to Emperor Constantine that the Fool’s and jester’s of the court could rule the kingdom better than the Emperor could.
In response, Constantine had decreed that the court Fool would be given the chance to prove this boast, and he set aside one day of the year upon which a fool could rule the kingdom. The first year Constantine appointed a jester named Kugel as ruler, and Kugel immediately decreed that only the absurd would be allowed in the kingdom that day.
Therefore the tradition of April Fool’s was born.
News media throughout the country reprinted the Associated Press story. But what the Associated Press reporter who had interviewed Professor Boskin for the story hadn’t released was that Boskin was a hoaxer. Not a word of the story was true, which Boskin admitted a few weeks later. Boston University issued a statement apologizing for the joke and many papers published corrections.

One of the best Victorian Hoaxes: Washing the White Lions
In the middle ages lions really were kept in the Tower of London. However, by Victoria’s reign in 1837 all the lions had been moved to safer accommodation in Regents Park

In 1860 April Fool’s day would fall on a Sunday, this gave some prankster a brilliant idea; to invite all and sundry to the Tower of London to see the annual washing of the white lions.
The invitation said: Admit the bearer and friend to view the annual ceremony of ‘washing the white lions’ on Sunday 1st April 1860.
What happened on that fine April day was that thousands of people turned up, milled around, until one- by -one, it dawned on them that they had been hoaxed.
No one appears to know who invented this hoax but there is only speculation that whoever this was, was a member of the aristocracy. As he had time on his hands and also the means to pay for and distribute the invitations (no desktop publishing in 1860!)


A very big thank you.
A very big thank you to Mr Mike Baxter for all his work over many years in producing this Newsletter. His computer blew up which helped him make up his mind to take a well earned rest!
If you would like anything put in the newsletter or have any new ideas, please let the new editor know by leaving details at the pool.


Answers to the quiz:-
1) Oxford
2) South Africa
3) Donna Karan New York
4) Two
5) Australia
6) Bradley Walsh
7) Martin Bell
8) Nicola Sturgeon
Hope you all did well.


Another Joke:

A man and his wife were awakened at 3:00 am by a loud pounding on the door. The man gets up and goes to the door where a drunken stranger, standing in the pouring rain, is asking for a push. “Not a chance,” says the husband, “it is 3:00 in the morning!” He slams the door and returns to bed. “Who was that?” asked his wife.. “Just some drunk guy asking for a push,” he answers. “Did you help him?” she asks. “No, I did not, it’s 3am in the morning and it’s bloody pouring rain out there!” “Well, you have a short memory,” says his wife. “Can’t you remember about three months ago when we broke down, and those two guys helped us? I think you should help him, and you should be ashamed of your-self. God loves drunk people too you know.” The man does as he is told, gets dressed, and goes out into the pounding rain. He calls out into the dark, “Hello, are you still there?” “Yes,” comes back the answer. “Do you still need a push?” calls out the husband. “Yes, please!” comes the reply from the dark. “Where are you?” asks the husband.

Over here on the swing,” replied the drunk….



    • In at the Deep End Issue 67:December 2014

  • Replacement Ceilings

When the ventilation problem erupted some four years ago the initial project was to up grade the ventilation system and make good all the condensation damage throughout the building, this included the ceilings in the large changing rooms. It soon became clear that it was not just the ventilation system that needed replacing but to ensure there were no other weak links in the system we had to replace all the plant room machinery at a huge cost that was not initially budgeted for.

To reduce the overall cost the large changing room ceiling and their associated work the project was split into two phases with the ceilings project becoming phase 2 that would be reviewed at a later date.

This date has now arrived and the pool has finally got the go-ahead (with enough funds) to start phase 2 of the ventilation refurbishment and repairs project. Phase 1 was completed in 2012/2013. Phase 2 is the repair and renewal of the ceiling where in the large changing rooms, everything has to come down and be replaced. The Association has now accepted a new, reduced, quotation for the job. After discussing the project with the new contractor, then all being well the work will start mid February. This is going to mean some disruption to some pool users because these changing rooms are going to be out of action for at least 2 weeks. Some Schools and groups will be affected, however the pool will remain open during this period.

When the work is being carried out please bear with us until the pool is back to full strength and good working order. People using the small changing rooms will not be affected by the work going on. It only affects pool users who use the 2 large changing rooms.

The Ceiling Appeal is not closed; any further donations will be most welcome and will reduce the pools commitment to the project.

The Association apologises for any inconvenience caused.

  • Winter Quiz

This year’s winter quiz is now on sale at the pool, £1 per sheet. The quiz is about Prominent British People and their achievements through the ages. For clarification of the answers no title, honorary or otherwise, have been included, only the persons Christian and Surname are required or as appropriate.

The closing date is Sunday 1st February 2015. The winner will receive £25 or a gift voucher of their choice to that amount.

Please sell some to your family and friends for the good cause of supporting the hydrotherapy pool.


  • Trekking

Two gentlemen called Scott and John have set themselves a challenge of trekking to the Mount Everest Base camp in Nepal in 2015. They came to me to ask if they could do this for sponsorship for the pool. To which I replied a very big yes please. Keep a look out for the date of the challenge and for ways of sponsoring them. Also to give them the encouragement they are going to need on this mammoth adventure.


  • To-days Teachers

After being interviewed by the school governors, the prospective teacher said:

“Let me see if I’ve got this right.

You want me to go into the classroom with all those kids, correct their disruptive behavior, observe them for signs of abuse, monitor their dress habits, censor their T-shirt messages and instill in them a love for learning.

You want me to check their backpacks for weapons, wage war on drugs and sexually transmitted diseases, and raise their sense of self-esteem and personal pride.

You want me to teach them patriotism and good citizenship, sportsmanship and fair play, and how to register to vote, balance a bank account, and how to apply for a job.

You want me to check their heads for lice, recognize signs of antisocial behavior, and ensure that they all pass their final exams.

You also want me to provide them with an equal education regardless of any handicaps, and communicate regularly with their parents in English or any other language, by letter, telephone, newsletter, and report card.

You want me to do all this with a piece of chalk, a blackboard, a bulletin board, a few books, a big smile, and a starting salary that qualifies me to be just above the bread line.

You want me to do all this, and then you tell me……

I CAN’T wish them a “Merry Christmas” because someone might take offence?

  • Money, Money, Money

You may already know that the pool relies heavily on fund-raising to cover the short fall on the running costs of the pool

This last year has been good and the Pool has done very well. Fund-raising this year was very productive and we had lots of events like Quiz nights, Fashion Show, Bucket collections, Curry Nights, Swimathon, Bazaar and 2 Concerts. We also had some very generous donations over the year, which really help out the pool. The Heroes of the pool is also doing ok. It has reached 5% of the target of £50,000. The walls in the lounge are looking very colourful.

Without generous people the pool would struggle to survive, so a very big thank you for everyone’s efforts this year.

  • Heard on the London Underground

Some actual announcements that London Tube train drivers have made to their passengers…

1. ‘Please note that the beeping noise coming from the doors means that the doors are about to close.

It does not mean throw yourself or your bags into the doors.’

2. ‘Please move all baggage away from the doors.’ (Pause…) ‘Please move ALL belongings away from the doors.’ (Pause….)

‘This is a personal message to the man in the brown suit wearing glasses at the rear of the train:

Put the pie down, four-eyes, and move your bloody golf clubs away from the door before I come down there and shove…!!!

  • Help Wanted

As a Charity organisation we are always looking for people to help out on fund-raising. The most important thing is your time. If you have odd hours spare and would like to help out please come and register with us so we can give you a call when events or anything comes up. You might not be able to help that time but there will be others that will suit you. Pop in and see us or give us a call and get your name on the list. Tel. 01793 496002.

  • Textile Banks

Here we go again calling on the generosity of our pool users and their families and friends to donate all their unwanted clothes to our textile banks. These banks provide a small but much needed funding for the Hydrotherapy Pool and is one activity where pool staff don’t have a hands on involvement.

Unfortunately the pool is in competition with numerous other charities, both national and local, for your unwanted clothes. The pool has two banks of which one is at the pool with the other behind MacDonald’s at the Orbital Retail Park. If you should know of any other textile bank that has the Hydrotherapy pools Harry the Duck logo on them please let the pool manager know so that we can determine if we should be receiving income from them.

The definition of textiles is any item of clothing that can be worn, including shoes. Please do not put pillows, duvets, rugs or any torn rag type materials in the banks as they take up space and do not earn us any income.

To bring you up to date on what funding these achieve over the past 12 months, clothes that have been placed in our Recycling Banks have totaled approx. £759.00. Added to the items we have kept for sale and other donated goods that we display in the lounge area, this has generated a total of £3604.00.

Please keep bringing your unwanted items in (except any electrical/ gas items) if you have any doubt on whether we can take an item, please speak with the pool staff.

  • What Highway Code!

When I’m riding down the pavement; in my skin-tight Lycra shorts

I weave around pedestrians, I have such happy thoughts.

I never stop at traffic lights and what’s a one-way street?

Pelican crossing are for wimps and that’s what I shout at those I meet.

In my little wedge shaped helmet to protect my empty head

As all my brains are quite near my saddle so people fear I’ll knock them dead.

I have neither licence nor insurance and of course, I don’t pay road tax

I use my anonymity to cover up my tracks.

I’m your modern Urban Cyclist and I know I own the road

I’m proud that I’m too selfish to obey the Highway Code.

I’m a self styled eco-warrior and I’m holier than you;

So step aside you fools on foot there’s an angel coming through!

I bet you know this person

  • So long 2014 /Hello 2015

As 2014 comes to a close we all start to take a look back at what the year had dealt us.

Births: There was our former staff member Laura who gave birth to a lovely bouncing baby boy in October.

Deaths: The pool sadly lost a few users this year young and old and also our general handy man and great friend to the pool Pete Foster.

Marriages: None relating to the pool although we now have Harry (still single) working at the pool so this could be one for the future.

Divorces: None as far as I know.

Celebrations: Birthdays, Anniversaries, Holidays etc all happy times.

Whatever hand this year has dealt you, we hope you can look to the future with hope and happiness. All the staff at the pool would like to wish you a Happy Christmas and a Healthy New Year.


  • Fund Raising

The pool staff, in particular Jan Platt our assistant manager, and the committee have not been idle in recent months in fund raising for the Hydrotherapy Pool. Two events have taken place recently and another planned for December:

Christmas Bazaar (October)

Held again at St Barnabas church hall, Gorse Hill raised a mighty £725.00

This was a brilliant effort by all the volunteers and donators of goods for sale- Thank You.

Fashion Show (November)

Held at one of the function suites at Swindon Town football ground and was a great success raising £425.00.

A big thank you to our volunteer models – Maggie & Emma – and to all who came and supported us. Everyone had a very pleasant evening and we will be looking to organise another show, hopefully next year.

Christmas Bucket Collection (December)

Sunday 21st December 2014

At the Old Town CO-OP starting at 10am to 4pm

PLEASE we need your help and if you would like to help and can spare 1 hour that day please call the pool on 496002 to get your name down or come and speak to us at the pool.


  • She needs help

My sister has a lifesaving tool in her car, which is designed to cut through seat belts and break car windows if she gets trapped. She did not like the rattle it made in the glove compartment so she now keeps it in the boot.

  • Christmas/New Year Opening Times

Wednesday 24th December Closed

Thursday 25th December Closed

Friday 26th December Closed

Saturday 27th December Open as normal 9am to 1pm

Sunday 28th December Open as normal 9am to 1pm

Monday 29th December Open 2pm to 6pm for referred public

Tuesday 30th December Closed

Wednesday 31st December Closed

Thursday 1st January 2015 Closed

Friday 2nd January Open normal hours

Saturday 3rd January Then open as normal

  • And Finally

On behalf of the Pool Trustees, committee and all the pool staff, we wish you a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year. It also goes without saying we would also like to thank all of you for your support over the last year.


  • In at the Deep End Issue 66 :August 2014

Time fly’s


Did you know that the pool was 35 years old back in July? Not bad when you think it was labelled back then as another white elephant that was bound to fail.

The concept of a hydrotherapy pool for Swindon was first conceived in the late 1960’s when a group of like minded people sat down to discuss the possibilities of such a facility. A committee was formed and support was canvassed with the local Council, Health and Education authorities – with favourable interest the project moved ahead with a meeting in the town hall in 1973. Land was purchased from the Borough Council and fund raising started in earnest. The pipe dream became reality when the Hydrotherapy Pool opened its doors, following an official opening ceremony by Joel Joffe, on 3rd July 1979. The initial idea was that the Council would adopt the pool after 3 years but this never happened. This could well be where the notion comes from that we are owed by the Council.

Now 35 years on we are still going strong through the dedication of its staff, committee and its supporters. Not only has our chairman Peter Jones – he was one of those like minded people back in the 60s – been associated with the pool from the beginning, the previous pool manager Paul Charlwood stayed for 31 years before he retired and the current assistant manager Jan Platt started back in October 1979. Now that history of dedicated experience has made the success we are to-day long may it continue. Now that could be conceived as blowing our own trumpet but we could never have blown that trumpet without the tremendous support we have received not only from the local community but the Charitable Trusts and Foundations – not forgetting the national lottery fund – who have supported our cause. It has been never easy fund raising as the next 35 years will undoubtedly prove.



This years annual swimathon was on July 19th. It was another great day unfortunately the numbers of participants were down this year. We can have a maximum of 45 swimmers where we only had 15 on the day. Some people couldn’t swim on this day so they came and did there swim at an other time.

A big thank you to all participants for your time and effort. Also thank you to the stall holders who also gave up there time and raised £180 to go on top of what the swimathon sponsors will make. People think the Swim is the hard part but as we all know its collecting the sponsorship money which is the hardest of all. Lets look forward and make next years Swimathon bigger and better.


Dates for the Diary

Here are some important dates for your diary. It is your support that makes the world go round or in this case the Hydrotherapy Pool.

Saturday 25th October 2014

Xmas Bazaar at St Barnabas Church, Gorse Hill

Tuesday 4th November 2014

Pool Association’s AGM at Blunsdon House Hotel

Wednesday 12th November 2014

Fashion Show at Swindon Town Football club

Sunday 23rd November 2014

Cotswold Voices Choir at Blunsdon House Hotel

For more information on these events and more please call the Pool and ask for Jan or Neil 01793 496002.


Things you find


A little boy opened the big family Bible. He was fascinated as he fingered through the old pages, suddenly something fell out of the Bible, he picked the object up and saw it was an old leaf that had been pressed between the pages. “Mummy look what I found” the boy called out. “what have you got there? With astonishment in the young boy’s voice he answered, “I think its Adam’s underwear!”


Beware of the Dragon

Neil Montgomery

Some time ago we talked about entering the Dragon boat races but put it aside for this year, however the other weekend I went to Coate Water to have a look at these Dragon boat races. To my surprise it looked fantastic. I had a friend who was in the Swindon Adver boat, but were a man down and before I knew it I was press-ganged into the boat.

I am not saying I made a difference but before I joined the team they had lost all there races, after I arrived they didn’t lose one. So yes I think I made all the difference even if it was just the ballast!!!!!

The event is run by the Swindon Phoenix Rotary Club and I’m going to try again and get a team together for next year. If you would like to join me please call me on 496002. If its not your thing come down and support its great fun.


Ceiling Appeal

The appeal that we have in place for the replacement ceilings in the large changing rooms has come to a stand still. We need £40,000 plus for the repair but unfortunately we have only got just over £15,000. Our committee has exhausted the applications for grants and have been turned down by all. The biggest problem the appeal faced was the funding was required for building work that did not directly provide any benefits for the disabled. Although fund raising is always hard but if you can legitimately show your project will benefit the disabled you are half achieving your goal.

We could do with help! If anyone knows someone who knows of anybody who can help with a grant or fund-raising please come forward and speak to Neil – Pool Manager – on 01793 496002. The work needs to happen sooner rather than later because its not very nice getting changed in that environment.



Return of The Cotswold Voices

After the success of the two concerts we had in aid of the pool, with the Cotswold Voices and the Welsh Male Voice choir. I am pleased to announce that on the 23rd November 2014 that the Cotswold Voices choir will be putting on another performance at the Blunsdon House Hotel. This time there will be a Christmas theme. The tickets will go on sale soon and will stay at the original price of £5 per person. I know it will be a fantastic evening if last year was anything to go by. Call the pool for info and tickets on 01793 496002.


Great deal


A man bought a new fridge, to get rid of his old fridge he put it in the front garden with a sign on it saying “Free to a good home, you want you take it”. Three days later it was still there, so he changed the sign to read: “Fridge for sale £50”. Next day somebody stole it.


Pool Assistants


Its good bye Laura Whitby and hello Harry Cattell.

Laura who joined the pool in May 2013 and is about to start a family with the baby due in October. The Association would like to thank Laura for her input during her short stay and we wish her well in the future.

Harry was on the same set of interviews as Laura and we discovered he was still looking for a career change and could start almost immediately we look forward to working with him the future.



This was the fifties
A takeaway was a mathematical problem.
Bananas and oranges only appeared at Christmas time.
All crisps were plain, the only choice we had was whether to put the
salt on or not.

A Chinese chippy was a foreign carpenter.
A Big Mac was what we wore when it was raining.
Oil was for lubricating, fat was for cooking.

Tea was made in a teapot using tea leaves and never green.
Coffee was Camp, and came in a bottle.
Cubed sugar was regarded as posh.
Fish didn’t have fingers in those days.
Eating raw fish was called poverty, not sushi.
None of us had ever heard of yoghurt.

Indian restaurants were only found in India.
Cooking outside was called camping.
“Kebab” was not even a word never mind a food.
Sugar enjoyed a good press in those days, and was regarded as being
white gold. – Prunes were medicinal.
Surprisingly, muesli was readily available, it was called cattle feed.

Pineapples came in chunks in a tin; we had never saw a real one.
Water came out of the tap, if someone had suggested bottling it and
charging more than petrol for it, they would have become a laughing
One thing that we never ever had on our table in the fifties .. was elbows!



Chickens at the ready

This is a true story,scientists at Rolls Royce built a gun specifically to launch dead
chickens at the windshields of airliners and military jets to recreate travelling at
maximum velocity. The idea is to simulate the frequent incidents of collisions with
airborne fowl to test the strength of the windshields.

American engineers heard about the gun and were eager to test it on the
windshields of their new high speed trains. Arrangements were made, and a gun was sent to the American engineers. When the gun was fired, the engineers stood shocked as the chicken shot out of the barrel, crashed into the shatterproof shield, smashed it to
smithereens, blasted through the control console, snapped the driver’s back-rest
in two and embedded itself in the back wall of the cabin like an arrow shot from a bow..

The horrified Americans sent Rolls Royce the disastrous results of the
experiment, along with their designs of the windshield and begged the British
scientists for suggestions.

Rolls Royce responded with a one-line memo: “Defrost the chicken first.”


Wish List


In the April issue of the Newsletter the Association produced a list of 20 wishes for which funding needed to be raised, whether through projects or donations to complete each wish.

Since April we have been able to remove two items from the list:

1. Overhead patient lift

The project included a new transverse rail over the pool and the removal from the two small changing rooms of the motor and charging units and fitting them in the large changing room area.

This was achieved thanks to an earlier donation from the Lloyds TSB Bank SW region.

2. New dosing system for Pool and Jacuzzi

This item has been temporary removed from the list. After further research it was found that the whole process could cause its own Health & Safety hazard with cleaning the filters. This has to be done using acid, which when in contact with chlorine releases dangerous fumes. Further discussion with the supplier when more details on safety are available will be held.



This year being 100 years anniversary of the First world war and remembering the souls we lost. Got me thinking about our remembrance garden. I wonder how many of you knew we had one. Its a nice little secluded garden in the corner of the car park. We have a couple of benches to sit and remember and reflect. There is a raised bed were we can attach plaque’s (which the pool can get made) in memory of a loved one or friend.

If this is something you would like to do please speak to Jan or Neil. 496002. Even on nice days just go and have a quiet sit down and gather your thoughts.


Bucket rattling

The bucket collection we had at the Old Town CO-OP on one Sunday in June managed to raise £306 which is great. The lack of help/volunteers did not deter those who did turn up who did a fantastic job. Thank you very much to all. Hopefully we will doing another one in December and with a few more people it could be onwards and up wards. Many thanks to Bridget Berry for organising the event.


They walk amongst us


On the way to the pool I stopped at McDonalds and ordered some fries. The girl behind the counter asked if I would like some fries to go with that?


The other day I was walking down the beach with some friends when someone shouted “Look at that dead bird” One of the group looked up at the sky and said “Where”


Harry’s Heroes

The Heroes wall has had a good start. The lounge is looking very nice and colourful. It has slowed down now and I wanted to remind people of the ongoing appeal of the Heroes. Our target is £50,000 and we have about £4,000 so far which is great but we need to keep moving up so any help, input or ideas are most welcome.


Wiggo Wannabes

Neil Montgomery

The group of people called the Hydro-bikers completed their ride from London to Brighton to raise money for the Pool.

I (Mini bus driver, first aider, food and drink provider and general dogs body) dropped them off at 8am in Battersea Park and off they went to the start in Clapham Common. They were off or so they thought, the roads in London were not closed off so they had to contend with the Sunday morning traffic, I lost count of the number of traffic lights. It was nothing but stop start all the way through south London. The team whom my wife was one of them had set themselves a target of 5 hours to complete the race. It took them over two hours to complete the first 10 miles and considering the length of the ride was 56miles it was going to be a long day.

Unfortunately this came true and it was a long day the 5 hours turned into 9 hours and they were very saddle sore!!! I’m not sure what’s worse, tired legs from riding at a good pace in 5 hours or riding slow for 9 hours and getting saddle sore. There was one highlight though, and that was a hill just outside of Brighton called the Ditching Beacon or just The Beacon to those seasoned cyclists. The hill has the same gradient as one of the Tour de France stages and its about a mile and a half long. Out of the 12 riders only 4 made it up with out stopping.. And my wife and her 66 year old Dad were two of them. Admittedly they were slow but they made it all they way to the top. The rest of the team were waiting for them and gave them a huge cheer when they arrived. My wife said that was the hardest climb she had ever done but it was worth it. When they finally reached Brighton with medals in hand, we loaded up their bikes and headed home via the pub for a massive meal and a well earned pint or two..

Now there was a extra incentive for them to complete the ride and that was they smashed their fund-raising target of £2000 but achieved £4500 and they didn’t want to let anyone down and they didn’t. The money has been donated to the Pool and they wish to thank all of those who donated.

So to the fantastic bikers a HUGE WELL DONE and a BIG THANK YOU from all of us, the pool user’s, staff and committee.

I wonder what there next challenge might be. All suggestions welcome..


Traffic cameras


In a lot of States in America traffic cameras are everywhere for all occasions. This is an article from the LA Post.

A man was driving through town when he saw the flash of a traffic camera. He figured that it was his picture taken for exceeding the limit even though he knew that he was not speeding. Just to be sure he went around the block and passed the same spot driving even more slowly, but again the camera flashed. So he repeated it and drove even slower as he passed the spot again, but the traffic camera still flashed. He tried a fourth time with the same result. He did this a fifth time at snail’s pace and it still flashed.

Two weeks later he received five tickets in the post for driving without a seat belt.


Old Town Festival

This year the Thamesdown Hydrotherapy Pool was lucky enough to be chosen to be the Charity of the year for the Old Town Festival. There have been lots of events going on during the summer to which I know people really enjoyed. The Association would like to thank the festival for there consideration, help and support. We would also like to wish them luck for next year.


Peter Foster


It was with great sadness that we learnt of the sudden and untimely death of Peter Foster. Peter was the pool’s on call maintenance engineer for a number of years, prior to this he had been involved on an ad hoc basis putting his hand to numerous problems all with great success. He will be a hard act to follow.

The Pool Association offer their condolences to his wife Janet and family.


Fashion Show

Don’t forget on the 12th November the Pool are running a Fashion show at the Swindon Town Football club. There will be lots of opportunity to browse and buy high end stock at very reasonable prices.

For more information please contact Jan on 01793 496002.






















  • In at the Deep End Issue 65 :April 2014


Wish List


Periodically we are asked by visitors to the pool, companies and local businesses if we have a wish list. We first produced a wish list in 1997 containing 20 wishes, all but two of these were achieved, thanks to your generous donations and support, by 2012.

We have now formulated a new list of 20 wishes (see pages 3/4), including the two from the original list. The list is not necessarily in order of priority, however the first 5 wishes will need implementation in the near future to ensure that the facility can continue to operate within the Health & Safety guide lines.

If your company or business could sponsor a wish or contribute towards one it would be much appreciated. We are also looking for individual support from people who can spare voluntary time with some of the wishes, plus there are numerous small items that could be undertaken with little or no cost to yourself.

We rely heavily on the generosity of our pool users, general public, local companies and business for support to the upkeep of the facility. If you can help or point us to someone who can you can obtain further detail by contacting the Pool Manager, Neil Montgomery on 01793 496001 or email to info@thamesdownhydrotherappool.com Please keep these pages of the Newsletter for feature reference.


Scouts and Guides Of Swindon

Over the years the pool has had lots of support from different groups of people and just recently we were asked if we wanted to be the charity of this years Scouts and Guides Gang Show at the Wyvern Theatre Swindon. To this I replied with a huge yes please. So after every performance we stood with our buckets and smiley faces and were greeted with some of the most generous people who donated also with a smile. It raised £500 So again thank you to the Scouts and Guides of Swindon you did us proud.


Winter Quiz

Well it’s all done and dusted for another year and judging from the many thoughtful comments we received you all found it most enjoyable with over 12 people getting more than 90 correct answers. This year we managed to get nearly 200 quiz sheets in circulation but unfortunately only 138 were turned into funds, plus we were able to secure sponsorship of £50 this year which covered the prize money.

There were two winners with 95 correct answers which could not be separated; so well done to Ruth Webb and Jack Woolley both from Warminster (both previous winners) and to all the other participants and the quiz sheet sellers.


Have you got enough time

TIME!!! What is Time. Time is very precious to everyone. As a Charity your time can be precious to us also. We need people to donate there time to help us fund-raise for the Pool. We are going to start a fund-raising committee to come up with ideas of raising money and then arrange the events. We would like 10 to 15 people to be on the committee, that would probably meet four times a year and also at events etc. The events would be things like Quiz nights, table top sales and bucket collections or any other ideas the committee come up with. If you are interested please contact Neil at the pool on 01793 496002.

St. David’s Day Concert

The distinguished Welsh Male Voice Choir “COR Y GYRLAIS” from the Swansea Valley performed a concert at St Peter’s Catholic Church, Eastleaze on Saturday 1ST of March 2014 in aid of the Thamesdown Hydrotherapy Pool.

What an evening it was, with fantastic sounds from the Male Voice Choir, who were supported by the Cotswold Voice Choir and Soloist Mrs Marion Aspell. A huge thank you to all who came and supported this event it was a wonderful evening and we raised over an amazing £1,900 for the pool.



Santa Dash

Neil Montgomery

The very kind people of the Swindon Hash Harriers donated over £650 to the pool, from proceeds collected from their Santa Dash around Coate Water in December. We were one of three charity’s to benefit from this event. I took my two young children to watch and the questions coming back at me about Father Christmas and why there was more than one etc. Oh the lies I told that day I’m very sorry!!!

The presentation of the cheque was another eventful evening I thought I had gone back in time and was in the 1920s . With Gangsters and their molls everywhere. It was their belated Xmas party. It seemed they were having great time. A big thank you to them all.



The Wiggo wannabes

Neil Montgomery

Because I work at the pool my wife wanted to get involved in some fund-raising. Great I thought, maybe she would sort out a raffle or sell cakes or even a car boot sale. NO she has decided to enter the London to Brighton bike ride! Not only this she has roped in 12 other poor soles to join her and one being her 66 year old Dad. I’ve been blown away by there dedication to training through the wind and rain. The team of 12 have called them selves the Hydro Bikers and decided that between them all there fund-raising target is £2,000. They have all purchased a professional bike jersey with our logo on and its mostly yellow (hoping to get some inspiration form the Wiggo factor – Tour de France)

If you see them around the town please give them a cheer or toot of encouragement . You can also help by sponsoring them online at http://www.virginmoneygiving.com/team/hydrobikers

Please help them to help us to help others – Thank you.




My first day at school


On his first day at school Johnny handed his teacher a note from his mother. The note read, ”The opinions expressed by this child are not necessarily those of his parents”.

Later that week Johnny got lost and found himself in the senior girls changing room. When he was spotted, the room burst into shrieks with the girls grabbing towels and running for cover. Johnny watched in amazement and then asked, “What’s the matter, haven’t you ever seen a little boy before”.

Mary had just finished her first week of school. “I’m just wasting my time”, she said to her mother. “I can’t read, I can’t write, and they won’t let me talk”.




Quack, Quack, Quack

It is back, the Rotary Club of Old Town Swindon’s famous duck race is on

Monday 26th May 2014 at 11am to 4pm at the Westcott Recreation Ground (opposite the Running Horse or The Runner as its now called).

Ducks are £1 each and in aid of the Wessex Hospice and other Rotary Charities,

the event also incorporates the RSPCA dog show.

The Hydrotherapy Pool will receive half of the income for all the duck they can sell.

Ducks now on sale at the pool.




There’s a hole in my bucket !!!

This is a call to all you bucket collectors !!!

We have a bucket collection/bag pack day on the Sunday 22nd June 10am to 4pm at the old town CO-OP. If you can spare 1 hour of your time please call Neil at the pool 01793 496002 to have your name put down, thank you.


Where did that come from 1?

The wealthy, back in the 1500s had slate floors that would get slippery in the winter when wet, so they spread thresh (beaten straw) on the floor to help keep their footing. As winter wore on, they kept adding more thresh until when you opened the door it would all start slipping outside. A piece of wood was placed in the entranceway. Hence the door step being called a “thresh hold”.



At age 4 success is – not peeing in your pants

At age 12 success is – having friends

At age 16 success is – having a driving licence

At age 20 success is – having sex

At age 35 success is – having money

At age 50 success is – still having money

At age 60 success is – still having sex

At age 70 success is – still having a driving licence

At age 75 success is – still having friends, who speak to you

At age 80 success is – not peeing your pants



Thamesdown Hydrotherapy Pool Association

(Registered Charity No. 267687)


2014 and beyond

1. Suspended ceiling in large changing rooms

The major ventilation failure the pool suffered 4 years ago causing considerable condensation damage throughout the building is the contributing factor for this wish. The ceilings have been partially stripped down to prevent further collapse but are now in urgent need of repair. There is currently an appeal to raise the £50,000 needed for the project and to date have raised £15,270.

2. Overhead patient lift

The rail that extends over the pool is another casualty of the condensation damage and needs urgently replacing before it becomes a safety hazard. The new rail and fitting will cost £2,500

3. New dosing system for Pool and Jacuzzi

The EU in their wisdom have banned the use of liquid chlorine in pools from 2016. Not before time as liquid chlorine creates a huge Health & Safety problem for the pool. In the future we have to use chlorine tablets but our current dosing system will only handle liquids. A new dosing system and fitted is £2,500.

4. New front door

The current door is over 35 years old and showing its age. From the safety and security angle it has too much glass in its construction. A good quality strong external door is estimated at £1,000

5. Replace Jacuzzi plant

This machinery has been operating almost non stop for over 10 years and parts are continually having to be replaced. A new plant room is estimated to cost £8,000.

6. Replace tiles around the pool

These tiles have been in place since the pool opened –not bad you say- but like a lot of other thing on this list are showing their age. They are now much harder to keep clean and several need replacing due to damage. This involves replacing the complete edge of the pool down to 2/3 tiles below the water line. The cost is estimated at £10,000 not including lost of revenue to pool closure.

7. Waterproof shed

We currently have a very old container box in the car park that’s been with us since 1980, it was condemned when it was given to us but it served a propose. This mainly stores items donated for Bazaars, table top sales etc plus other pool items that are too bulky to keep elsewhere. A large good quality weather proof and secure shed is estimated to cost £3,000 plus the disposal of the old container.

8. New computers/printer/colour copier and good WIFI system

The computers run all our pool related systems and the administration. With technology continually changing our 5/6 years old equipment is struggling to cope. It is estimated the cost of replacing all these items would be £2,500.

9. New CCTV system

Again old technology, the system is now12 years old plus we need additional cameras to cover some blind spots. A modern system with ten cameras is estimated to cost £5,000


10. Window between Pool and Jacuzzi

A lot of pool users do not appreciate that we have a large Jacuzzi, by having a window in the pool side wall will advertise its existence. This should encourage more people to use it and will also improve safety as staff will be able monitor both areas without disappearing going from one to the other. An estimated cost of £2,500.

11. Replace fence surrounding the Remembrance Garden

It would be sad if this area becomes an eyesore after all the effort that pool users have put into it and raised the money to build it. An estimated cost for a new fence is £1,000.

12. Re-point the whole building

A lot of pointing is required on the original building, but re-pointing the whole building will prevent long term damage. It could be undertaken over a period of weeks if someone has the skills and time available. If we have to contract the work out then it is estimated the whole job would cost £2,500.

13. New drinks dispenser

Again old technology, the current machine is over 10 years old and continuously needs staff to carry out a hands on fix. It is estimated a new machine to meet our requirements would cost £1,000.

14. New chairs for pool side hoists

Unfortunately these chairs need replacing every 5/6 years and time for new ones is almost with us. The chairs cost £700 each.

15. New Rota wash

This machine saves pool staff having to get into the pool every week with long handle scrubbers. The current washer is over 10 years old and it does have its bad days, the modern machines are lighter to handle and more efficient. Cost £2,000.

16. New outside doors for whole building

This is in addition to the front door (see 4) the other safety exit and plant room doors are all of a flimsy construction and need to be replaced with a stronger built door that will add greater security to the building. Estimated cost per door £1,000.

17. New movable patient tables

Two of the current tables suffered condensation damage and have been condemned. Movable tables are extremely important for the severely disabled to be able to use the shower facility. A modern table that operates safely in our hot and humid environment cost £3,000 each.

18. Replace all floor tiles

Like all structural fitting in the building the floor tiles have been down for over 35 years. Many have now lost their non slip compatibility and are increasingly very hard to keep clear and germ free. To re-tile the complete floor the cost is estimated at £20,000 plus the lost of revenue due to pool closure.

19. New ceiling in the Jacuzzi area

Like the large changing room ceilings the Jacuzzi area suffered from the condensation damage. The estimated cost is £7,000.

20. Annual equipment maintenance

This requires a sponsor for all or part of the annual maintenance budget of £6,000.


The Hydrotherapy Pool Association has to rely heavily on outside support to allow it to function so smoothly as it does providing thermal water therapy for the disabled. If you can help or know someone who can it would be much appreciated. Contact the pool on 01793 496002 or email to info@thamesdownhydrotherapypool.com









  • In at the Deep End Issue 64 :December 2013

Ceiling Appeal


Back in August 2011 when the Ventilation project/appeal was started the ceilings and their associated damage in the large changing rooms were all included in the project. Once we got started a further two problems became apparent, firstly funding was extremely difficult to get and secondly as our contractor looked closer at the initial requirement it was evident that none of the old plant room machinery would be compatible with the new ventilation system.

At this stage the Association took the decision to split the project into two phases, putting the second phase, the ceiling damage, to be done at a later time. This was agreed by the contractor.

Time has now come to raise funds for phase two, an appeal will be launched in January 2014 with the target of £49,750 to complete the project.

The pools recently installed ventilation system for the main pool area with its associated boiler and filtration unit is now operating satisfactory. Prior to this the original pool area system was unable to operate at full capacity allowing hot moist air from the pool area to circulate through into the new changing room area causing considerable condensation damage to the ceilings and fittings. The project involves new suspended ceilings and roof insulation, total rewiring with increasing ventilation ducts throughout the two changing rooms. Due to the new suspended ceiling the overhead patient lift and track rails require to be re-sited into the toilets.

The benefits of the project would ensure that all current and future users would continue to enjoy the pools thermal water therapy in a stress free environment.

Without these repairs the facility would be unable to continue at its current intake level as the ceiling condition will eventually force closure of the affected changing rooms. The biggest losers would be the schools and group users as the two original smaller changing rooms are inadequate to handle the current number of disabled people using the facility.


Thank you 1685 times!


The Hydrotherapy Pool were nominated to take part in the Lloyds Bank Community Fund promotion to lift your profile in the local community. Voting took place during September and October and over 2.3 million votes were cast across England and Wales. In the Swindon area 5528 people voted with the pool receiving a creditable 1685 votes which won us the top prize of £3,000.

Many thanks to our pool users and their families and friends

They walk among us


While working at a pizza parlour I observed a man ordering a small pizza. He appeared to be alone and the cook asked him if he would like it cut into 4 or 6 pieces. He thought about it for some time then said ‘Just cut it into 4 pieces please, I don’t think I’m hungry enough to eat 6’.

Entrance Fees


The pools entrance fees were discussed at the recent AGM in relation to the pools income and expenditure. It was agreed to hold the current prices for Individuals (£6)

and Schools (£28) but increase the Groups fee to £30, an increase of £2.

The definition of a Group in any registered association, club or charity who is affiliated to any form of disability and can include up to 20 patients including their carers.


The increase will take affect from 1 January 2014.

Did you know?



The spread was first developed when French emperor Louis Napoleon held a competition to find a cheaper, longer lasting substitute for butter for the army and the less prosperous classes.

In1869, chemist Hippolyte Mege-Mouries patented a mixture of suet, skimmed milk, pork and beef offal and bicarbonate of soda. He called it margarine from the Greek word margaron meaning pearl, because of its pearly white appearance. The recipe has changed but the name has stuck.


Christmas Bazaar 2013


This years Christmas Bazaar was the first in a long time totally organised by the Pool. This was because the friends of the pool have disbanded and it was too much of a valuable resource to lose. Jan stepped up and took on the bazaar nearly single handed, Just a little help from the girls and me. We asked for donations of things such as small items that we could sell or wrap for the Christmas tree stall, cakes, cuddly toys, DVDs and CDs, house hold items and children’s toys and lots more. Thank you to all who donated for the bazaar. The actual day was a great success. It was held at St Barnabas Church Hall in Gorse Hill. At 10am when the doors opened the queue went right back out into the street. There was a few old faces helping also some new ones, Thank you all.

By the end of the morning nearly everything was gone and after the total up of the money, they had made a fantastic £789.00. A huge thank you to Jan for all her efforts. And remember any unwanted Christmas presents please keep and donate them to the pool for next years Bazaar.

Again thank you all for your donations and help.

How to treat a husband


Always give him a kiss when you go out and when you come in.

Always give him back what you save from your housekeeping money.

Always let him have the best chair, if you only have one chair then you have to stand.

Never go out except when he says you can.

When he slips out at quarter to ten, don’t look at the clock.

Feed the brute three times a day.

Do all you can for him, if that doesn’t satisfy him, ask him what he would like.

Whatever it is let him have it and if that doesn’t satisfy him

Shoot him”


Heroes Lounge

We are about to decorate our lounge with the bright stars. On the stars will be the name’s of the people who have contributed towards the 500 heroes appeal.

The lounge will then become the Heroes lounge in recognition of people’s efforts.

The aim of the Heroes is to replace the money borrowed from the Pools restricted emergency funds with permission from the charity commission for the Ventilation appeal (£50,000.)

Please call the pool to find out how and what you need to do to become a hero of the pool.

On 496002 and ask for Neil.

Oh bless


While working for an organisation that delivers lunches to the elderly, I used to take my 4 year old daughter on my afternoon rounds. She was unfailingly intrigued by the various appliances of old age, particularly the canes, walkers and wheelchairs. One day I found her staring at a pair of false teeth soaking in a glass on a bed side table. As I braced myself for the inevitable barrage of questions, she merely turned and whispered, “The tooth fairy will never believe this”

Dinning out


The last Friday in November saw on astonishing event in aid of the Hydrotherapy Pool – a free 7 course dinner held at the Swindon Freemason’s Lodge. The event was organised by Carol Gibbon with her band of dedicated helpers and associated with Slimming World for providing the food. Some 70 people were summoned from the bar to the dinning room at 7.30 to spend the next three hours consuming an excellent meal. The event raised over £1,000 for the pool – how come you ask if it was a free dinner?

That was the catch of the evening, after having your fill of the 7 courses accompanied with numerous drinks (not free) you were asked to give a donation to what you felt the meal was worth, judging by the amount raised everyone must have enjoyed it. Events like this don’t come round very often but it is a sure way of combining enjoyment and fund raising.

Many thanks to Carol and her team for their time and unselfish support for local charities and not forgetting the Freemason Lodge providing their facilities.

Quiz Night

The Pool will be hosting another Quiz Night at the end of January 2014 – date note yet confirmed. It will be at the Lawn Community Centre in Windsor Road, starting at


Can you or your work place make up a team of 4 or 6 people, it will cost per team £10 to enter for another good nights entertainment. Sorry but there is no bar but you are welcome to bring your own. The evening will also include a raffle and Irish bingo…

Tickets and date from the pool on 496002.

Cotswold Choir


On Sunday the 13th of October the Cotswold Voices Contemporary Choir held a concert in aid of the pool’s funds. It was at the Blunsdon House Hotel who very kindly gave us use of their garden room and at a very good charitable rate. It was a fantastic venue and the hotel was very accommodating. The choir are quite young regarding how long they have been together. They really wanted to show there talents, which I have to say were absolutely brilliant. The first half started with the small Gospel section of the choir, and then progressed onto the full choir. The second half they sang melodies of the 70s and 80s which had the audience rocking say to speak (well defiantly swaying and clapping along) the whole evening was fabulous and overall with ticket sales and the raffle over £800 was raised. Because of the successes we are going to try and organise another concert around end of November 2014 so watch this space.

Genuine quotes


I had arose named after me and I was very flattered. But I was not pleased to read its description on a gardening catalogue: ‘Not good in a bed, but fine against a wall’.

Eleanor Roosevelt


My wife has a slight impediment in her speech. Every now and then she stops to breathe.

Jimmy Durante

Dragon Boat Racing

What is Dragon Boat racing?

Dragon Boat racing is an ancient Chinese tradition over 2000 years old and is one of Britain’s most competitive water sports. It’s a great way to raise money and it’s spectacular, colourful, exciting and fun! No experience or pre-event training required as a full safety briefing is given in the day! A Dragon Boat is a 40 foot long narrow boat, decorated with a Chinese dragon head and tail, and propelled by a crew of 16 paddlers who are kept in rhythm by a drummer. An experienced member of the event organisation crew steers the boat and ensures that everyone has a fun but safe time on the water.

For nextyears event The Thamesdown Hydrotherapy Pool has been asked to participate and are therefore looking for a team of people to take part in the Dragon Boat race at Coate water on the 29th June. The event is organised by Swindon Phoenix Rotary Club, so if you are interested please get in touch with Neil on Swindon 496002.

Teams are made up of at least 17 people (16 people to paddle the boat, plus one drummer). Teams can change their crew between races so that more people can have a go. Each team is given full safety instructions and a short practice before the races

All equipment is provided, boats, paddles, life jackets etc., and the whole event is organised with safety in mind.

Teams will race each other in a number of heats throughout the day and the fastest teams will then compete in the final. The winning team will be presented with medals and a trophy at a prize giving ceremony at the end of the day


St David’s Day Concert


The distinguished Welsh Male Voice Choir “COR Y GYRLAIS” from the Swansea Valley will give a concert at St Peter’s Catholic Church, Carronbridge Road, Eastleaze, on Saturday 1ST of March 2014 in aid of the Thamesdown Hydrotherapy Pool. The choir will be supported by Holyrood Junior School Choir and folk duo Sam and Hugo. COR Y GYRLAIS recently celebrated its golden anniversary and has an enviable record of successes at National and International competitions including the National Eisteddfod of Wales and the coveted St. Brieux gold medal. This is an extravaganza of song that can not be missed.

Tickets at £8 each will be available from pool staff early next year on 01793 496002 or Info@thamesdownhydrotherapypool.com and at the door on the night.

Darwin Awards


You’ve been waiting for them with bated breath, so without further
ado, here are the 2013 Darwin Awards:

Runner up

Stepping around a marked police patrol car parked in front
of a shop, a man walked into H&J Leather & Firearms intent on robbing the
store. The shop was full of customers and a uniformed officer was
standing at the counter. Upon seeing the officer, the would-be robber
announced a hold-up and fired a few wild shots from a target pistol.
The officer and a clerk promptly returned fire, and several customers
also drew their guns and fired. The robber was pronounced dead at the
scene by Paramedics. Crime scene investigators located 47 expended
cartridge cases in the shop. The subsequent autopsy revealed 23 gunshot
wounds. Ballistics identified rounds from 7 different weapons. No one
else was hurt.

The winner
Kerry Bingham had been drinking with several friends when one of them
said they knew a person who had bungee-jumped from a local bridge
over the river. The conversation grew more excited, and at least
10 men trooped along the walkway of the bridge at 4:30am. Upon arrival
at the midpoint of the bridge, they discovered that no one had brought
a bungee rope. Bingham, who had continued drinking, volunteered and
pointed out that a coil of lineman’s cable lay nearby. They secured one
end around Bingham’s leg and then tied the other to the bridge. His
fall lasted 40 feet before the cable tightened and tore his foot off at
the ankle. He miraculously survived his fall into the icy water and was
rescued by two nearby fishermen. Bingham’s foot was never located.

Christmas quiz


The pools Christmas quiz sheets are now on sale at the pool, priced at £1. The winner will receive £25 or gift vouchers to that amount.

This years quiz is about the coast line of Britain and Northern Ireland and its associated inland water ways..

Please buy some for your family and friends or if possible sell a few at work. Closing date is Sunday 9th February.

Good bye and thank you


Sadly the demise of the Friends of the Hydrotherapy Pool has been announced. The Friends came into being on 1 August 1997 after 4 months of consultation and planning by a steering committee. Its aim was to raise money for specific pool projects, this they did with great success. In its 15 years as a viable part of the pools team it raised over £100,000 from which the overhead patients lift system was purchased together with the wall mounted patients adjustable tables/showers units, the static pool side hoist, the heat retention blanket and many more small items that kept the pool running smoothly.

The Friends had a hard working committee and at its height had, for a number of years, over 400 dedicated members. The Pool Association wish to thank all those who gave their time for the benefit of the pool – you will be sadly missed.

Christmas Closing Times

Pool Closed

Tuesday 24th December

Wednesday 25th December

Thursday 26th December

Friday 27th December


Tuesday 31st December

Wednesday 1st January 2014


Pool Open

Monday 23rd December – Normal hours

Saturday 28th December 9am – 1pm

Sunday 29th December 9am – 1pm

Monday 30th December 2pm – 6pm


Reopen as normal

Thursday 2nd January 2014

And Finally

Neil Montgomery

Just remember its not what you eat between Christmas and New Year you have to watch its what you eat between New Year and Christmas where you have to be careful, so you can all go and be merry.

On behalf of the Jan, Hannah, Laura and Myself (Neil) we want to wish you all a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.

It also goes without saying, the Pool Trustees and committee would like to thank all of you for your support over the last year and to wish you all a merry Christmas and a happy and prosperous New Year.



:In at the Deep End Issue 63: August 2013

General fund raising

The Thamesdown Hydrotherapy Pool as we know is a charity. But as an organisation we are in a very lucky situation as we don’t have to raise all of our running cost. 70% of the running cost is raised through admissions, the other 30% is made up from donations or fund raising. This is about £35,000 to £40,000 a year. Every year this challenge becomes more and more difficult to achieve. Reason’s the economy slowing, competing with other charities and others.

One of the most precious things anyone can give a charity is there time. There own time to help us raise money. We are looking to form a fund raising committee. This would be people giving up there time to help organise and run events to help raise money for the pool. The general public on the whole are very generous but if we can offer them something in return for there money then everyone’s a winner. Things like quiz nights, Concerts, Bag packing, Car washing and a lot more.  A gentleman even donated his moustache to be shaved  a few years ago towards the pools fund raising, the possibilities are endless. We have the ideas but a lack of help to run the events.

If you would be interested in joining a fund raising committee please contact Neil on 01793 496002 and submit your details.

And remember all we need is your time.



Earlier this year the pool was offered the services of a choir for free. They are called The Cotswold Voice Choir. The choir’s repertoire appeals to all ages from the Abba melody, Madonna, a touch of Queen and Rhythm of life. We jumped at the chance of this fund raiser and went ahead and started organising it.

The date is Sunday October 13th 2013 at the Blunsdon House Hotel and the cost of the tickets will be just £5. So for a wonderful evening of great music please get your tickets from the pool. 01793 496002.

Leading on from this we have had another offer of a choir, this time it’s a welsh male voice choir from valleys and we are hoping to hold this event on March the 1st 2014 (St David’s Day). We will release more details later in the year.

Bit like busses they always come in twos, but we’re not complaining.


500 Heroes

The 500 Harry’s Heroes got of to a slow start. It’s slowly picking up the pace and we need to keep the momentum going. Only 488 places’s left and still lots of time to complete the challenge of raising £100 or more. Don’t forget when you have completed your challenge we will put your name up on the wall of the pools lounge or Heroes lounge as it will be soon known.

The challenge can be anything from bungee jumping to hosting coffee mornings.

Please pass on the information about the our Heroes to any one you think might be able to help.

In the last issue of ‘In at the Deep End’ we opened with the article about ‘We are open’. Here we were enthusiastic about the new plant room machinery and ventilation system and that if it last for the next 30 years it was money well spent.

Are we living in a fools paradise – who are we kidding? – we must put all our cards on the table and accept that the machinery may last for another 30 years but without getting our 500 Heroes the facility as we know it to-day will not last another 10 years without a real injection of funding.


For Sale


HAYTER ROTARY MOWER (Model – Harrier 48)

It is powered by a Briggs & Stratton petrol engine with electric ignition

4 years old, only used for 3, with service record.

Reason for sale, the mower is stronger than my hip!

Contact Mike Baxter on Swindon 539013


Swimathon / Table Top sale.


Saturday July 13th was the day of the Annual Swimathon all in aid of the pool. Numbers of participants were slightly down this year, but those who took part made the event a great occasion. There were some huge efforts from people in the pool. We had two people who have over come their fear of water to complete it and one young man swam unaided for the first time this year. His dad normally helps him but not this year the 14 year old managed 7 ½ self propelled lengths of the pool. This was just a few to mention but everyone put an awesome effort into it…. well done. We even had Laura our new staff member dressed as our logo Harry the duck and she swam a whopping 43 lengths. So far the event has raised over £1,700


At the same time we held a Table Top sale in the car park which raised £375. This was our first time in holding this and all in all we think it went very well. It was very hot maybe too hot for some people and we would have liked more shoppers but even so they did very well.

We will definitely hold it again next year and may be increase the size as well.

A big thank you to Jan for organising this for us.

So watch out for news of next year’s event.

Missed the Swimathon?


If you were away, frightened to perform in public or just forgot the date, then a private Swimathon can be arranged just for you. This is the chance for family or inter departmental rivalry to be settled. Can the Smiths out perform the Jones? Can the warehouse achieve more than the personnel department?  Can workers out perform management? You can have a fun time and help in our never ending fund raising battle, your efforts can make a difference. Interested?  We look forward to hearing from you.

More details from Neil Montgomery at the pool 01793 496002.


Generation Gap

We got married first and then lived together.   A Big Mac was an oversized raincoat and crumpet we had for our tea.  We existed before house husbands, computer dating, dual careers when a meaningful relationship meant getting along with cousins and sheltered accommodation was where you waited for a bus©

We were before day care centres, group homes and disposable nappies. We never heard of FM radio, tape decks, electric typewriters, artificial hearts, word processors, yoghurt and young men wearing earrings.  For us time sharing meant togetherness, a chip was a piece of wood or a fried potato, hardware  meant nuts and bolts and software wasn’t a word©

Before 1940 the term making out referred to how you did in your exams, stud was something that fastened a collar to a shirt and going all the way meant staying on the double-decker to the bus depot©

In our day, cigarette smoking was fashionable, grass was mown, coke was kept in the coal house, a joint was a piece of meat you had on Sundays, pot was something you cooked it in and rock music was grandmothers lullaby©

We who were born before 1940 must be a hardy bunch when you think of the ways in which the world has changed and the adjustments we have had to make.  No wonder we are so confused at the generation gap to-day……..how quaint can you be©     Anon

Textile Banks

Old clothes, Shoes, rags or any textiles can be deposited in to our textiles bin, the proceeds of this go to the pools fundraising. There are now six textile bins around Swindon which are in aid of the pool. One here at the pool in the car park. Asda Walmart has one of ours; Greatfield garden centre has one and also one in the car park of Sainsbury’s in Royal Wootton Bassett. We have a share of one in Salisbury also. Just recently a customer of our’s alerted us to a bin in the car park of South Brook street church with our logo on it so now we are getting the proceeds from there to. If you spot a bin with our logo on and its not one of the one’s above please get in touch with the pool and speak to Neil or Jan on 01793 496002.

If you know of anywhere we could put a new bin please get in touch also.


Salad days

 The humble lettuce comes in numerous shapes and sizes and is most widely used for salads.  With over 370, at the last count, varieties world wide they range from the heavy Iceberg lettuce from America to the softer cabbage lettuce more popular in northern Europe not forgetting the crisp Cos variety of the eastern Mediterranean. China, never one to be left behind has a variety called the Cetluce which is mainly grown for its stir fry value.

Lettuces were grown by the Romans, but are thought to have been cultivated first by the ancient Egyptians in around 4500BC. Wall paintings found in some Egyptian tombs are said to represent a form of Cos lettuce .The earliest post Roman mention in Britain appears in a seed book in 1597. Lettuce up to and including this period were grown for their seeds and latex, this is the milky juice found when a leaf is broken. This bitter latex was often used as a substitute for opium and laudanum. Don’t rush out to buy a crate of lettuce, its horrible.


Hello from Laura

 Hi my name is Laura Whitby and I’m the new staff member at the Thamesdown Hydrotherapy Pool. I’ve been in the job now for three months and I’m slowly finding my feet but enjoying every minute. There are lots of great people involved with the pool who are either pool user’s staff or volunteers. My back ground is in Leisure and I have worked for the Borough Council for 16years. In that time I have been a lifeguard, gym instructor and receptionist but I felt it was time for a change and a new challenge. So when this opportunity came up, I jumped at the chance.

The love of my life’s name is Bertie and yes you guessed it he’s a dog. Oh, just don’t tell my boyfriend. I enjoy walking my dog and keeping fit. In my time I have spent a lot of time travelling, seeing the world and experiencing some wonderful things. This new chapter of my life has only just begun and I would like thank everyone for making me feel welcome and I look forward to seeing you all soon

Its that lettuce again

 My grand daughter went to her local burger take away and ordered a chicken burger. She asked the person behind the counter for “minimal lettuce”. He said he was very sorry but they only had iceberg lettuce.

An Ode to the Pool

 We limp down to the pool-side

and gently slither in

The warm and smoothing water

as it caresses tender skin.


We do our exercises,

with each other we compare

Our various disabilities,

the aches and pains we share.


We listen to the music

as back and forth we swim.

Knowing that each movement

will benefit each limb.


We’re hoping, though we’re lucky

having this facility,

That lack of funding won’t mean

lack of hydrotherapy.


So as you read this poem,

I hope, perhaps, you’ll think

if you become a Hero it might save

the pool becoming extinct.


Christmas Bazaar

 It will be upon us very shortly and we will be again looking for your excellent support in helping us to fill our stalls. Again this year we want good White Elephant, Tombola and Raffle prizes, DVDs/CDs and not least those lovely cakes.

If you have any of these items (no cakes yet – these can be left at the pool a few days prior to the event) please watch the pool notice boards for dates to bring them to the pool or ring Jan or Neil on 01793 610130 to arrange collection or delivery. Please do not clutter up the pools limited storage space until asked.

Another please, no clothes items or books and nothing delivered to the hall on the morning of the Bazaar.

The main thing to remember is that the Bazaar is on Saturday 26th October at St Barnabas Church Hall Gorse Hill with doors opening at 10.00am and finishing at 11.30am. If you can help on the day please contact a member of pool staff.


Did you Know

 Fact by M Micklewhite

Blue eyes get lighter with age  –  The human body contains about 80,000 km (48,000 miles) of veins and capillaries  –  Each day, an average pair of feet loses half a pint of water in sweat  –  There are 4,000 wax glands in the ear  –  If you are left-handed, the nails on your left hand grow faster than those on your right, and vice versa – I really wanted to know that Michael.


The Spell Check Checker

Do you have that infuriating wiggly red line appear under a word went typing a letter on your PC suggesting you – no telling you – have spelt it wrong, only to find it puts another spelling in its place with a completely different meaning. Then this little ditty may ring a bell.

I have a spell chequer

It came with my pea sea

It plainly marques for my revue

Miss steaks I kin knot see

As soon as a mist ache is maid

It nose bee four two long

And eye can put the error rite

It’s rare lea ever wrong

Eye strike a quay and type a word

And weight four it two say

Weather I am wrong or write

It shows me strait a weigh

Eye have run this poem threw it

I am shore your pleased too no

It’s letter perfect awl the weigh

My chequer tolled me sew


Pool Committee

 Over past year there have been numerous changes to the Pool Trustees and committee, so lets bring you up to date on who’s who:

Peter Jones                  Trustee & Chairman

Chris Hooker*             Trustee & Treasurer

Mike Baxter                Trustee

James Woolford*        Trustee

Bridget Berry              Trustee

Rob Lancaster             Trustee

Jane Featherston*

Christine Gale*

Neil Montgomery       Pool Manager

* Denotes pool user


What you didn’t know about the EU

In France April Fool’s Day is known as Fish Day; Spain has the world’s shortest frontier with Gibraltar; The eastern slope of Mont Blanc is in Italy – the summit is in France; The Greek National Anthem has 158 verses; What we call a “black eye” is called a “blue eye” in Germany; Denmark has the oldest national flag in the world; In Portugal the Church owns two-thirds of all the land; The major export of Liechtenstein is false teeth.  


Provoking Thought

If we could shrink the earth’s population to a village of precisely 100 people, with all the existing human ratios remaining the same, it would look something like this:

There would be: 57 Asians, 21 Europeans, 14 from the Western Hemisphere – both north and south and 8 Africans; 52 would be female and 48 would be male; 70 would be non-white and 30 would be white; 70 would be non-Christian with 30 being Christians; 89 would be heterosexual and 11 would be homosexual; 6 people would possess 59% of the entire world’s wealth and all six would be from the United States; 80 would live in substandard housing; 70 would be unable to read; 50 would suffer from malnutrition; 1 would be near death; 1 would be near birth, 1 would have a college education and 1 would own a computer. When one considers the world from such a compressed perspective the need for acceptance, understanding and education becomes glaringly apparent.

Standing orders

In the December 2008 issue of the Newsletter we carried an article about donations to the pool by standing orders. We are very pleased by your response – yes, its proof that people do read the Newsletter – and we now have a number of standing orders up and running with more in the pipe line. Please do not stop here; this is a great way to support your pool plus to generate additional gift aid funding, if you are paying income tax. For further details talk to a member of the pool staff.


Remembrance Garden

A timely reminded about the PoolsRemembranceGarden (In the far corner of the car park). Have you considered about having a plaque erected? If you would like a loved one, friend, associate or colleague to be remembered, the pool can arrange for an engraved plaque to be made and placed in our RemembranceGarden. The plaque is made of brass and is approximately 14.8cm x 4.5cm in size and you can have up to a maximum, of 30 letters in no more than three lines. The plaque will cost £30.00 including fitting. For further information and an application form can be obtained from a member of the pool staff.




 We are open

After ten weeks, including the Christmas /New Year break the pool finally opened its doors for business on 6th February.
A lot has happened in those ten weeks, first the main reason for the closure the ventilation system and plant room. We now have a brand new plant room with every bit of machinery being replaced and sited around the walls making it very user friendly. The original equipment was well over 30 years old and cost back in the seventies around £30,000, the new equipment cost over £80,000 and if it lasts for the next 30 years it was money well spent. With the new ventilation ducts around the pool area the humidity has finally been brought under control to the acceptable level and removed the condensation problem.
While all this was going on the pool staff were not idle, far from it, they completely deep cleaned every area, including equipment, of the pool building. All painted areas were stripped and repainted, varnished areas got the same treatment. Finally to make the whole building look spick and span the Friends, bless their cotton socks, donated new carpeting and chairs and changing benches upholstered. The Friends also paid for a new suspended floor, another casualty of the condensation problem, in the Hot Spa area.
The Pool Association wish to express their gratitude and sincere thanks to Neil, Jan and Hannah for the marathon task they undertook and of course the Friends of the Pool.

Entrance Fees

In the last issue, December 2012, of the Newsletter it was explained in some detail why the Pool Association had to increase the entrance fees. We have since had several pool users point out that there are swimming pools and health clubs etc in the area that are cheaper and better value as you can spend all day in some for the same price, than us.
Very true! – It is appreciated that some local pools, health clubs etc are cheaper but we are not a recreational swimming pool but a hydrotherapy facility providing thermal water therapy for the disabled. If the Association should decide to operate on a sound financial bases and not rely on continual fund raising, then the cost would increase by a minimum of £3.00 a session, which would still make us the cheapest hydrotherapy facility in the south west of England. This would still have to be increased annually to cover inflation costs of our commodities.
The Pool Association has been far to generous, but we are a charity, in pricing the facility. This was a bold decision when it first opened in 1979 to keep entrance fees low and making up the annual shortfall by fund raising events, donations and sponsorship. This annual shortfall as now peaked at £42,000 a sum we are finding near impossible to find. As this situation does not look improving in the next two or so years the Pool Association must consider charging a cost effective entrance fee.

Spring Quiz

It is not only the start of Spring it is also the start of the pools annual fund raising offensive so it is only right we start with a quiz.
The quiz is about confectionery so if you think you know your sweets then this is the quiz for you. Quiz sheets are available from the pool office and cost £1 each with a close date of 28th April. The winner will receive £25 or gift vouchers of your choice to that value. It would be much appreciated if you could sell a few to friends or neighbours.

Just an Idiot

A friend of mine is a medical student currently doing a rotation in toxicology at the poison control centre. Today, this woman called in very upset because she caught her little daughter eating ants.
She was quickly reassured that the ants are not harmful and there would be no need to bring her daughter into the hospital. She calmed down and at the end of the conversation happened to mention that she gave her daughter some ant poison to eat in order to kill the ants.
She was told in no uncertain terms to bring her daughter straight into the A & E immediately.
It can’t be true – but it is.

The Final Word on Fat

For those of us who watch what we eat, here’s a final word on nutrition and health. It’s a relief to know the truth, after all those conflicting medical studies:
1. The Japanese eat very little fat and suffer fewer heart attacks than the Americans, British or Canadians.
2. The Mexicans eat a lot of fat and also suffer fewer heart attacks than the Americans, British or Canadians.
3. The Japanese drink very little red wine and suffer fewer heart attacks than the Americans, British or Canadians.
4. The Italians drink large amount of red wine and also suffer fewer heart attacks than the Americans, British or Canadians.
5. The Germans drink a lot of beer and eat lots of sausages and fats and suffer fewer heart attacks than the Americans, British or Canadians.
6. Ukrainians drink a lot of vodka, eat lots of fatty meats, cabbage rolls and suffer fewer heart attacks than the Americans, British or Canadians.

Conclusion: Eat and drink what you like, it’s speaking English that apparently kills you.

Pool Hygiene

We are now entering an era with all new modern machinery but no matter how modern and efficient the new filtration unit is it can not handle certain elements that sometimes crop up in the pool. Therefore this is a timely reminder of a very delicate problem of pool hygiene. The last serious case of accidental fouling the pool water was back in 2003 when the pool had to be closed for 7 days to decontaminate the filters and the pool it’s self. Not only is it an unpleasant task for the staff but a serious loss of income plus the expense of replenishing the water and chemicals.
The Pool Association stress most strongly that if you are a carer/helper or pool user and you are aware of a tummy problem please give the pool a miss until the situation clears itself. Incontinent pads/nappies are not 100% safe in these situations.

Idiot Sightings

A guy walked into a little corner store with a shotgun and demanded all of the cash from the cash drawer.
After the cashier put the cash in a bag, the robber saw a bottle of Scotch that he wanted behind the counter on the shelf. He told the cashier to put it in the bag as well, but the cashier refused and said, “Because I don’t believe you are over 21.” The robber said he was, but the clerk still refused to give it to him because she didn’t believe him. At this point, the robber took his driver’s license out of his wallet
and gave it to the clerk.
The clerk looked it over and agreed that the man was in fact over 21 and she put the Scotch in the bag.
The robber then ran from the store with his loot. The cashier promptly called the police and gave the name and address of the robber that he got off the license. They arrested the robber two hours later.

500 Heroes

In the previous Newsletter we ran an article about 200 Heroes being needed and would like to thank the few who participated. This unfortunately did not get off the ground mainly due to the Trustees, committee and staff having greater things to worry about namely the Ventilation Project which was consuming all our efforts from December onwards.
So with the Ventilation Project behind us lets have another crack of the whip so to speak. The Appeal will be launched on the 8th April with a press release and an initial £100 being donated by Paul Charlwood, yes he is still about. Some 500 flyers will be sent to businesses and companies in the Swindon area and the appeal will run until April next year.
The need for this local appeal is two fold; firstly the Pool Association had to contribute £62,000 towards the Ventilation Project, £50,000 of this came from our emergency fund of which we had to get the Charity Commission’s approval to use but it must be replaced. Secondly it will raise awareness of the hydrotherapy facility.

A Project for the future

When the Ventilation Project was first conceived it included replacing all the condensation damage in the large disabled changing rooms. As the appeal progressed it became apparent that funding was even harder to come than previous appeals especially when we were turned down by the Big Lottery Fund and the Landfill Fund. By early 2012 temperatures in the building were becoming intolerable for pool users and staff alike. The decision was then taken to remove the changing rooms area from the project and concentrate on the ventilation system.
We now have a ready made project waiting to be funded. It is hoped that with humidity now under control there will be no further condensation damage, early signs are promising, thus allowing this project to be put on hold until later this year.

Age Testing

This test was developed by a prominent University to help determine the eye retention ability as one gets older.
Take your time and see if you can read each line aloud without a mistake. It was considered that the average person over 50 years would have difficult in doing so.
1. This is this cat
2. This is is cat
3. This is how cat
4. This is to cat
5. This is keep cat
6. This is an cat
7. This is old cat
8. This is person cat
9. This is busy cat
10. This is for cat
11. This is forty cat
12. This is seconds cat

Now go back to the beginning and read the third word in each line from the top down.


Over the years the Hydrotherapy Pool has been sponsored by numerous local companies and for that we are truly grateful. This year Catalent Pharma Solutions (Zydis), the pharmaceutical company at Blagrove has nominated the pool along with two other local charity’s as their charities for the year. They are running monthly in house raffles as a means of raising funds towards their sponsorship. Our nomination is much appreciated.
If there is another company looking to provide sponsorship we would be an eager recipient.

Pool Events

The Pool has two main fund raising events, both regulars, planned for this year. The Swimathon is planned for Saturday 13 July and the Christmas Bazaar on either Saturday 26 October or Saturday 2 November, date still to be finalised.
The pool’s Swimathon is a great fund raising event and also an enjoyable fun day for those participating. For this the pool is divided into three lanes and you are allowed 20 minutes to see how many lengths you can complete and of course getting sponsored for your number of lengths, we don’t mind how you do it; swim, float, crawl or walk, it all adds up.
The event is open to all comers providing a pool user acts as your sponsor, therefore this is early notice for local companies to get a team(s) together. This is also a great way for non pool users who have donated money through sponsorship to the pool to come and see what a little hidden gem of a facility the hydrotherapy pool is. Sponsor forms will be available from the pool office early May onwards. For further details contact Neil or Jan on 01793 496002.

The Christmas Bazaar will again be at Barnabas Church hall Gorse Hill. Further details about the date and what is required plus how can you help will be in the August issue of the Newsletter.

Past pool users
Over past years some well known sports personalities, in their time, have used the pool facilities.
Cricket: Former England Captain – Freddie Brown.
Darts: Former World Champion – Bob Anderson.
Racing: Grand National Winners – Ben De Haan and Carl Llewellyn
Gold Cup Winner – Mark Pitman
Dessert Orchids Partner – Simon Sherwood
Football: Ex Swindon Town, the late lamented – George Hunt
Swindon Town League Cup Winner – Joe Butler
Others include; England netball players, Dutch national swimmer, National three-day eventing, several professional jockeys, flat and National Hunt. County standard Bowls, Badminton and Squash players.

Heard on the Underground

In a national newspaper recently there was an article about Train Drivers on the London Underground who given a microphone think they are stand up comedians.
Here are a few of the actual announcements that they have made to their passengers…

1. ‘Your delay this evening is caused by the line controller suffering from E & B syndrome: not knowing his elbow from his backside.
I’ll let you know any further information as soon as I’m given any.’

2. ‘Do you want the good news first or the bad news? The good news is that last Friday was my birthday and I hit the town and had a great time.
The bad news is that there is a points failure somewhere between Stratford and East Ham, which means we probably won’t reach our destination to-night.’

3. ‘Ladies and gentlemen, we apologize for the delay, but there is a security alert at Victoria station and we are therefore stuck here for the foreseeable future, so let’s take our minds off it and pass some time together.
All together now…. ‘Ten green bottles, hanging on a wall…..’.’

Water Facts

Here are a few icebreakers for your next cocktail party or barbecue when you are stuck for something to talk about. The Hydrotherapy Pool contains 21,000 gallons of water. The water is filtered 24 hours a day 365 days a year. Every two hours the whole body of pool water passes through the filter, 12 times every 24 hours, 4,380 times a year. The water is monitored constantly for chlorine and pH content (We use the term pH in every day language do you know what it means? Potential Hydrogen) this is backed up for accuracy every 2 hours while the pool is open by pool staff. (That’s what we are doing when you see us taking bottles of water out of the pool & spa; we are not filling up the kettle) To keep everything clean and fresh both the pool & spa are backwashed (The natural flow is reversed to clean the filter out) and fresh water added to maintain water quality and user comfort. Every 7 days the water is given a microbiological test (To make sure there are no oggly booglies in the water); we also test the water for Totally Dissolved Solids (TDS) Calcium Harness, Total Alkalinity and perform a balanced water test. So next time you dip your toe in rest assured the mad scientists in the Office are making sure it is perfectly safe and of high quality for you.

Small World

His name was Fleming, and he was a poor Scottish farmer. One day while trying to make a living he heard a cry for help coming from a near by bog. He dropped his tools and ran to the bog. There, mired to his waist in black muck, was a small-terrified boy screaming and struggling to free himself. Farmer Fleming saved the lad from what could have been a slow terrifying death. Next day a fancy carriage pulled up to the Scotsman’s sparse surroundings. An elegantly dressed nobleman stepped out and introduced himself as the father of the boy Farmer Fleming had saved. “I want to repay you,” said the nobleman, “you saved my son’s life”. “No, I can’t accept payment for what I did” the Scottish farmer replied, waving off the offer.
At that moment the farmer’s own son came to door of the family hovel. “Is that your son?” the nobleman asked. “Yes” the farmer replied proudly. “I’ll make you a deal,” said the nobleman, “let me provide him with the level of education my son will enjoy, if the lad is anything like his father he’ll no doubt grow to be a man we both will be proud of”. And that he did. Farmer Fleming’s son attended the very best schools and in time he graduated from St Mary’s Hospital Medical School in London. He went on to become known throughout the world as the noted Sir Alexander Fleming, the discoverer of Penicillin.
Years afterwards the same nobleman’s son who was saved from the bog was stricken with pneumonia. What saved his life this time? – Penicillin. The name of the nobleman? – Lord Randolph Churchill, his son’s name? – Sir Winston Churchill. Someone once said; what goes around comes around.

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