Converted shipping container swimming pool coming to Coventry

The pool will be touring the country to highlight the lack of access to swimming in deprived areas and encourage more to get involved.


Jane Nickerson, the CEO of the National Governing Body for swimming, artistic swimming, diving, open water swimming and water polo, stressed the benefits of the sports to more than 150 delegates at a Coventry and Warwickshire Champions event. 

Nickerson, who used to compete for Coventry as a swimmer, has gone on to head the charity, working to promote access to swimming for everyone as well as looking to take the sport to disadvantaged children. 

The organisation will be transporting a pool in the shape of a shipping container around the country to highlight the lack of access to swimming in deprived areas and to encourage people to enjoy the many physical and mental health benefits associated with aquatic activities. 

According to Swim England’s Value of Swimming report published last November, the health benefits associated swimming saves the NHS around £375 million a year – which is why Swim England aims to encourage people of all ages to take up the sport. 

She said: “Swimming is a really crucial part of communities in terms of the health and wellbeing of residents and in bringing people together, something which we fundamentally support and work to promote.

“As a proud Coventrian, the city has a lot of excellent facilities for swimming with The Wave and the Alan Higgs Centre, but we want to continue this and bring access to the sport to the more deprived areas of the region.

“In 2020, we will be taking our converted shipping container pool around the country to the areas where access to pools is limited, to encourage more investment in local swimming and to teach local children the benefits of getting involved with swimming.”

Swim England and the RNLI also runs Swim Safe, a highly successful programme which teaches children aged from seven to 14 years old how to swim safely outdoors and what to do if they, or someone else, get into difficulty in the water.

More than 30,000 free spaces were available in 2019 and details of the 2020 programme will be announced later in the year.

Nickerson added: “We were officially made a charity in 2017 so we rely on support to help us to continue our work in getting more people active and swimming.”

From left: Champions Manager Nic Erskine, Jonathan Duck of Amtico, Jane Nickerson of Swim England, Peter Nicholls of Rugby School and Dr Mike Grant of Warwick Acoustics. 

The speaker line-up at the CW Champions event shone a spotlight on international companies based in the region with CEO of Amtico Flooring Jonathan Duck, giving Coventry business leaders his advice following the company’s success with offices around the world, and headquarters in Coventry.

Delegates also heard from Dr Mike Grant, CEO of Warwick Acoustics, leaders in cutting-edge technology set to revolutionise in-car entertainment systems, based in Warwickshire.

Les Ratcliffe, Chair of the CW Place Board said: “It was wonderful to once again see such an impressive line-up of speakers and a high turnout for our first event of the year.

“Coventry and Warwickshire is home to companies operating on a global scale and these messages of success are crucial for us to spread to our members.”