I note with dismay the decision of enjoyleisure not to bring forward the opening of Dunbar Leisure Pool.

The announcement by the First Minister that swimming pools could open two weeks earlier than the originally proposed date of September 14 – that original date was announced on July 30 with notice by the Scottish Government of a review to bring the date forward to August 31 if possible – was greeted in the swimming community as an opportunity to finally give back to people a much-needed resource... not least for young people and children whose physical and emotional wellbeing has so often been at risk during these lockdown times.

The opportunity to open at the earlier date of August 31 seems an opportunity missed.

The leading statement on the enjoy website says enjoy exists to “provide healthy choices for East Lothian residents”. And their most recent statement suggests that they will defer the opening of the pool with the public’s health and safety in mind; “we will not make any compromises on this”, they say. Enjoy suggests new arrangements for the pool will include a tanking system (aka lanes) and a booking system to ensure our safety as well as new hygiene arrangements.

Surely it doesn’t take a health and safety expert or leisure professional more than two weeks to devise lanes and a booking system? Or to implement a return-to-business action plan which has been developed with hygiene and safety considerations in mind?

It is noticeable that a number of private leisure facilities have taken advantage of the revised date, no doubt because their financial survival depends upon offering a service to their customers.

If money is at the heart of the decision by enjoyleisure, it would be preferable to say so rather than hiding behind familiar heath and safety mantras. After all, these facilities are funded from the rates and taxes which people in the community, i.e their customers, continue to pay, whether we are on furlough or not!

Chris Garnett

Dempster Place