Copmanthorpe Primary School Governors have withdrawn their support

The Copmanthorpe Primary School Governors again discussed our Project to renovate and reopen the school swimming pool at their full board meeting on 10th May 2021. Unfortunately, a vote confirmed that the Governors remain unable to support our Project. This means that our charity cannot continue with the aim of saving the existing school pool.

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The Governors’ decision is the culmination of a discussion between Copmanthorpe Community Pool and the Governors over the last year. The summary below gives details on the Governors’ concerns and our responses to them What a great body this woman has – fuck bodybuilding women who hmg todomotospe: topic: buy bodybuilding steroids – susanhh (1/1). with links to the Governors’ letters (with their permission) and our responses.

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July 2020

The Governors stated their intention to make a decision on whether to support our Project at their October meeting, including a requirement for guarantees of at least 50% of the funding required (1 July 2020 letter). We responded to this letter noting that funding targets and deadlines were not appropriate given major funders were not accepting applications for non-COVID-19 related projects, amongst other matters (15 July 2020 letter). The Governors held an extra-ordinary meeting to consider our response and proposed amended criteria for our update to their October meeting (31 July 2020 letter).

October 2020

We provided a detailed progress report for the Governors’ meeting, addressing the Governors’ three criteria, noting the ongoing COVID-19 impacts on funding applications and highlighting progress made in spite of this (October 2020 report). Following discussion at their meeting, the Governors decided to withdraw their support for the Project (31 October 2020 letter). We responded to this letter to request a meeting in early 2021 with representatives of the Governors to discuss their decision and try to find a more constructive way forward that satisfied both the School’s concerns and respected local support for our Project as demonstrated in our community survey.

March 2021

Three representatives of our Project (including two charity Trustees) met with three Governors (including the Chair and Deputy Chair) via Zoom. We discussed the Governors’ reasons for withdrawing their support (in brief – Governors considered the Project unlikely to raise sufficient funds and Project timescales too long) and our proposals to address them (including focussing fundraising on reopening the pool at first) (March meeting notes).

May 2021

Notes from the March meeting and updated relevant information (including new funding sources) were presented at the Governors’ May meeting. We were also able to provide an updated costs estimate for the Project based on splitting it into a first phase to get the pool back in use (and generating income and support) and a second phase to add an extension with improved changing rooms and other facilities. The costing for the first phase was around £250K and would include improvements such as insulation (which reduces running costs), increasing the pool depth (which enables more activities to take place), and adding stepped access (which increases the accessibility of the pool) – improvements that make the facility more usable for more people. We also noted that the costs of materials etc. are standard rates and Trustees would look to secure discounts and in-kind contributions to reduce overall costs.

Following discussion, the Governors voted not to change their position and to withdraw their support for the Project (14 May 2020 letter).

Without the Governors’ support, we cannot continue the Project with the aim of saving the existing school pool. The two options we are considering are to continue with a different aim of building a new swimming pool elsewhere in the village or to wrap-up the charity.

If we do continue, this means a rethink of the existing business plan and funding applications because they are geared towards saving an existing facility, not building a new one.

If we do not continue, the money we raised before we became a charity will go to the Friends of Copmanthorpe Primary School and the remainder to the Copmanthorpe Recreation Centre. Any Pledges will not be collected, and the Sink or Swim village lottery will close.

We welcome your thoughts and any offers of help – via comments below or email. Please also subscribe to our email newsletter for updates.

It’s not over, yet…

In October 2020 the board of Copmanthorpe Primary School Governors voted to withdraw their support for our Project to renovate and reopen the swimming pool for school and community use, and since then progress has been on hold and further complicated by the COVID pandemic.

On Monday 22nd March, three members of Copmanthorpe Community Pool met four representatives of the Governors on Zoom (including the chair, deputy chair, and headteacher) to discuss their concerns and to put forward some options for the Governors to consider. The representatives have agreed to put these options to their next Full Governors Board meeting on 22nd May 2021.

We hope that the Board will accept our proposal to split the Project into smaller stages, with an earlier re-opening and later extension after further fundraising, and cooperate with us in completing the Project. With the Governors’ support we would aim to obtain a community asset transfer of the pool and reopen it as a facility for the community, with minimal funding, completing only the essential work, with this work completed as soon as possible after the lifting of COVID restrictions.

In the meantime, we will continue to clarify the funding situation (currently still impacted by COVID) including details of the Community Ownership Fund recently announced by the UK Government, which is particularly relevant to our Project as it supports communities in taking over and running assets that would otherwise be lost. We will similarly clarify design details, stages, costs, and other practical matters for the Governors’ May meeting.

We thank everyone for your continuing support, which the nearly £1500 we have received in Pledges in March alone demonstrates. If the Board of Governors vote to accept our proposal, we will be looking for offers of help to clear out the pool building and put up fencing over the summer break, as well as quotes from local businesses. We would love to hear from anyone who can provide expertise and time on the project, or who has contacts who could give reasonable quotes for swimming pool plant machinery, such as a new boiler and filtration system.

Copmanthorpe Community Pool – Make or Break Time

Since our last update the future of our Project to renovate and re-open the school swimming pool for the benefit of the School and the whole community has become in doubt. This is despite the hard work of the Trustees and other volunteers of the Copmanthorpe Community Pool charity to make progress in the many aspects necessary to achieve a start date for the renovation.

Since our August update, grant applications have been submitted to the Postcode Community Trust, the Tudor Trust, and the Garfield Weston Foundation. Unfortunately all three applications were unsuccessful. The Hobson Charity also responded to our March 2020 application to ask that we reapply once we have two thirds of our funds raised. Our applications to Sport England and the National Lottery for grants to cover the majority of costs cannot be submitted as both funders are currently closed to non-Covid-related projects.

We have also been in discussions with Copmanthorpe Primary School Governors and, in May, we presented an update to them after which we were asked to demonstrate that we had 50% of the necessary funding in place by their October meeting. Given the difficulties of fundraising during Covid-19 we appealed against this criterion and the Governors asked instead for a detailed report against three criteria: funding applications, time frames, and project costs. Our detailed 6-page report showed that, whilst some progress is being made, numerous obstacles remain that are beyond the control of the charity. This included major funders not accepting applications for non-Covid-related projects, project timescales being dependent on City of York council processes, and building costs and duration likely to be increased by additional Covid-19 working measures (full report here). Following their October meeting, the Governors decided to withdraw their support for the Project as – in their view – the Project is not viable in the current climate. Without the Governors’ support our Project cannot continue.

We have requested a meeting with the Governors to discuss their concerns on project viability and hope to reverse their decision in the view of the considerable support for the Project expressed by the community survey, the Parish Council (also one of our funders), and Copmanthorpe’s Ward Councillor David Carr.

However, if a Project of this size does continue, it also needs much more support from the community. As the least deprived ward in York, Copmanthorpe may not access as much funding so a significant proportion of total costs will need to come from private and community funding. Given the Project’s uncertain future, are asking for Pledges of future donations rather than donations. Whilst we sincerely appreciate all the support received so far, responses to previous requests for Pledges have been low. If we are to continue, we need as many Pledges as possible. If you are considering making a contribution to the pool, now is the time to do so. Make a Pledge here or by sending your name, address and Pledge (future donation) amount to or drop off this information at Copmanthorpe Post Office.

Community Survey – The Results are in!

The results are in from the community survey we conducted in March. Even with social distancing coming into effect halfway through the survey, nearly 300 people let us know their thoughts about Copmanthorpe Community Pool. The survey reinforced that local people do see a need for the pool with 244 people responding that this was very important or extremely important. The full survey report is now available on the pool survey website.

We are very grateful to Imagine Projects for coordinating the community survey for us.

Have Your Say on the New Pool

Over the next few weeks, a community survey will be running to understand what facilities and activities people in Copmanthorpe want from Copmanthorpe Community Pool. This survey begins with two focus group workshops on Friday 7th February from 4-5.30pm, and on Saturday 8th February from 10-11.30am to give as many people as possible an opportunity to take part. An online and postal questionnaire will then follow – Copmanthorpe residents will receive a flyer with more details, and we shall share the survey link on our website.

Please do come and join us at one of the focus groups. There will be refreshments (pizza on Friday, and bacon butties or croissants on Saturday). Use the button below to register, or simply Register for Focus Groups