And on the other side of the fence...

PUBLISHED: 11:31 01 April 2010 | UPDATED: 15:02 06 May 2010

SIR – A few months back we wrote to declare our support for the re-designed Westminster Lodge. Having read the numerous letters and articles, such as those in support of swimming and those that appear to be against just about anything and everything to i

SIR - A few months back we wrote to declare our support for the re-designed Westminster Lodge.

Having read the numerous letters and articles, such as those in support of swimming and those that appear to be against just about anything and everything to improve our city, we would once again like to remind readers that it's not just about a new pool, but also the provision of many new facilities we don't currently enjoy, including not just a great pool, gym and climbing wall, but the wonderful new sports hall offering badminton courts.

As the WHTBA membership has more than doubled since our initial letter, clearly demonstrating the power of your local paper, and the local desire for sporting prowess and late life fitness, this great new local facility cannot come soon enough.

THE WHITE HART TAP BADMINTON ASSOCIATION

SIR - At last an informed view about the new Westminster Lodge.

Peter Simpson's letter clearly answers just about every point raised in objection with facts, rather than personal, and often misinformed or self-interested, opinion.

Thank goodness we have such an knowledgeable and experienced expert redesigning Westminster Lodge, who also happens to be a local resident, clearly passionate about providing the best possible facilities for his home city.

To those that say we must have a 50-metre pool - this has not been supported by the ASA, it would be more expensive to build, and more costly to run.

The proposed 25-metre design increases capacity, and will meet competition standards, allowing St Albans to host galas and events. Even the St Albans Schools gala had to be held at Hatfield!

To those who claim capacity will be inadequate, they clearly have not looked at the plans to realise it is increased, and there is also a 17x10m learner pool with adjustable depth for multiple uses. But it is not just about the pool.

The Option 2 design includes a large gym rather than the small, cramped and under-equipped gym currently on offer, a climbing wall and a multi-use sport hall, at last giving our city the standard of modern facility enjoyed in other towns.

With all the moaning and groaning about flumes, diving, 50-metre pools and trees (did Mrs Williamson even read the proposal to see there will be 200 new trees planted to replace the 30 cut down?) the naysayers whose only role in life seems to be to object, risk leaving the rest of us without.

It doesn't have to be all or nothing, the consultation is the chance to influence the design, not kill it off. Surely it's better to make positive suggestions based upon our local requirements, than to simply oppose. We've waited and debated for 20 years, it must be time to agree on doing something.

For the sake of local residents, concerned more for at long last providing a great sports centre for our families, rather than scoring political points or opposing for opposition's sake, lets support the design and just get it built!

DUNCAN BEARD

DeTany Court, St Albans

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