A brand new state-of-the-art hydrotherapy pool built to support students at Derwen College, near Oswestry, made quite a splash with guests when it was officially opened on Friday, 13th September .
Local dignitaries including North Shropshire MP Owen Paterson, Dr Josh Dixey, High Sheriff of Shropshire, and college governors were amongst guests welcomed to the unveiling. They were joined by students who will be using the brilliant resource, generous sponsors whose donations have made the project possible, and architects and builders who made the vision a reality.
The new Bradbury Hydrotherapy Pool will be open to students as part of their physiotherapy, health and wellbeing. The state-of-the-art pool incorporates accessible changing rooms, physiotherapy room and a warm water pool with sensory lighting and music. Students with mobility issues will be supported to access the pool with the use of a dedicated hoist and specialist shower trolley.
Derwen College student Sophie Lay, from Wrexham, came to the opening with her mother Sharron Lay. Sophie, who attends Derwen College’s Ashdale satellite site in Wrexham, will be a regular user of the hydrotherapy pool and facilities.
Chair of Governors K Kimber welcomed guests, and the ribbon was cut by fundraiser Paul Crosby. Mr Crosby has been instrumental in raising money for the pool as well as for many other vital projects over the years. Paul – who is retiring from fundraising duties at Derwen – was thanked for his commitment and hard work supporting Derwen over the years.
Derwen College Principal Meryl Green said: “Derwen College is pleased to officially open the Bradbury Hydrotherapy Pool ready for the new academic year. We have been able to design and build this fantastic facility thanks to generous donations from the community. The hydrotherapy pool will prove an invaluable resource for students providing them with physiotherapy as well as a sensory experience.”
The hydrotherapy pool has benefited from generous donations from many community groups and leading grant makers such as The Bradbury Foundation; St. James’s Place Charitable Foundation; and Garfield Weston Foundation who, between them, donated £330,000.
Hugh Inman, UK representative for the Bradbury Foundation, commented:
“The Bradbury Foundation is excited to have again helped Derwen College improve its facilities for the benefit of all its students. This modern Bradbury hydrotherapy pool, moreover, will also be used by the wider local community allowing the College to offer hydrotherapy benefits to as many people as possible.”
Catherine Ind, Head of St. James’s Place Charitable Foundation, said: “We are delighted to have been able to support Derwen College with this development of the hydrotherapy pool, knowing that it will make such a positive and long-term difference to the young people who attend the college.”
Karen Cartwright, Physiotherapist at Derwen College said: “This hydrotherapy pool and physiotherapy room enables our students to access a variety of exercise environments. The specialist facilities the new hydrotherapy pool offer, mean that a wider range of individual needs can be met and we can’t wait to start our sessions in there.”