A TRAINING pool in Dunfermline that hospitalised a 15-year-old boy seven years ago is now ready to use once again after years of works and delays.

Charitable trust Fife Sports and Leisure Trust (FSLT) has announced that works, led by Fife Council, on the pool at Carnegie Leisure Centre, led by Fife Council, are now finished.

Work included the installation of an enhanced ventilation system designed to meet the needs of performance swimmers, as well as essential maintenance on the pool tank.

The announcement this week comes following unexpected delays to works due to the delivery of materials from outwith the UK associated with COVID travel restrictions and logistics challenges.

The trust has kept aquatic clubs fully informed throughout the works and is now looking forward to welcoming back performance swimmers with pool timetables and training slots confirmed.

Emma Walker, chief executive for FSLT, said: “It is fantastic to be able to welcome swimmers back to Carnegie’s training pool – it’s a valuable facility which serves local performance swimmers with training opportunities, and we appreciate how important it is to them.

“We are confident that users of the pool will be pleased with the remedial works and will benefit from the improved ventilation system. Although the works have taken longer than expected, we strived to keep clubs and swimming’s national body, Scottish Swimming, informed and engaged throughout the process to ensure all stakeholders were provided for during the closure.”

Fife Council team manager, Andy MacLellan, welcomed the news that the training pool will re-open following work to install an enhanced ventilation system.

He said: "This is great news, albeit a bit later than we all hoped, but challenges associated with Covid and delivery of essential materials delayed our work. We look forward to seeing swimmers enjoying the improved facilities."

Ventilation has been a concern at the Pilmuir Street centre in the past and in June 2014 it emerged that a sportscotland doctor had advised elite swimmers from Carnegie Swimming Club to stop using the pool due to concerns over air quality.

He found the swimmers’ lung capacity was affected after sessions and, in the worst case, a 15-year-old boy was hospitalised after falling ill on the way home from training.

As a temporary measure, large electrical fans were placed next to the pool.

Exposure monitoring tests later confirmed that the ventilation systems were performing to the relevant standards but a council report conceded that the standards “do not recognise the need for increased ventilation during intensive swimming sessions”.