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Posted by Royal on August 11, 2004 at 19:58:36:
The Town fathers certainly thought big back in 1962.After a couple of years of debate,they bit the bullet and announced plans for a swimming pool to be built in Castlebar.Not an ordinary sized one but a pool designed by J.F.McCormack,Architect,Dublin & based on the Olympic Pool at Melbourne and incorporating international standard measurements.Castlebar Development Association were behind the plans & managed to get the Dept.of Health to transfer a 2-acre site from St.Mary's Hospital to them at Lough Lannagh.The cost was estimated to be about £21,200 & the plans included a toddler's pool,car parks,dressing rooms,spectator's stands,filtration & chlorination plants.
There was great joy in the Town with this news & a model of the proposed pool even went on display in one of the shops in Main street.
The amazing thing about this project was that it was not supposed to cost the ratepayers a penny & that all costs would be raised by the above organisation by the holding of carnivals,draws & pools.
Fundraising began with great gusto & an event called the "Gigantic Holiday Festival" took place in the Military Barracks with various bands,a fair,fancy dress,etc & a swimming gala took place in Lough Lannagh.
A sizable amount of money was raised but nothing near what was needed.The U.D.C had given an undertaking that no ratepayers money would be spent & so plans were scaled down.
Eventually,the committee realised that they couldn't raise the money & as a result,the project was shelved and that's when Castlebar lost its chance to have an Olympic sized swimming pool.
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