Being new to the island, I had no idea where to take Millie swimming so decided to try Western Swimming Pool as it wasn’t too far from where we lived.
The car park offers free parking but can get busy at times. The prices for a public session were reasonable and I paid £4 for parent and child admission (price correct as of April 2019).
The changing rooms are unisex with cubicles which is great for families as you don’t have to go into separate changing rooms. Most of the cubicles are quite small but they do have some bigger ones with changing tables as well as the large male and female group changing rooms. There are plenty of lockers using a wrist band and key – 50p is required to use a locker; you do get this back.
There are two pools – a larger one which is divided with lanes for ‘proper’ swimmers as well as an area for play and a small pool with depths of 0.7m – 0.9m for toddlers. The water in the small pool is so warm that it was perfect for Millie. It has an area which becomes a bit like jacuzzi with lots of bubbles and a fountain/shower-type thing. They also have plenty of toys such as balls, watering cans, floats and dive sticks/rings. It’s only a small pool so can get very busy but Millie loved it!
After attending a public swimming session and enjoying it so much, we decided to book on to some of the parent and baby/toddler group sessions (£5.50 per session and can be booked by calling or via the ‘book now’ button on their Facebook page). These were brilliant to help build Millie’s confidence with the water. She now attends a pre pre-school lesson each week (from 2 years until they go to school, payable in blocks of 5, 10 or 15 sessions). Millie absolutely loves these sessions because she has lots of fun and the teachers are amazing and incredibly patient. The staff at the pool are all really helpful if you’ve got any questions about any of the swimming sessions sessions. Further information can also be found by clicking here.
After swimming, we often head to the cafe, Cafe West, for some lunch. It’s only small but has at least 7 highchairs (which is brilliant for a small cafe), a children’s menu, free Wifi and CBeebies is sometimes shown on the TV. The food is great value and they serve things like breakfasts, sandwiches/toasties, jacket potatoes and cake, all at very reasonable prices. The children’s menu consists of either a ham, cheese or jam sandwich, fruit or biscuits and a yogurt and a drink all for £4 (price correct as of August 2020). Since the opening of the new park in August 2020, if you order food you’re given a buzzer so the children can continue playing in the park until your food is ready.I think this is a great idea!
I would definitely recommend Western Swimming Pool for anyone looking for somewhere to take young children for a fun swimming session.