A Derry dad whose four year-old daughter “stood shaking” under a freezing shower at Templemore Sports Complex has criticised the leisure centre’s “draconian” facilities.
Dan Bryce says the incident at the centre last Friday has left him so angered that he has launched an online campaign to have conditions improved at the Complex.
“The facilities there are just as they were when the place was built back in 1976,” Mr Bryce told the ‘Journal’ yesterday.
“Maybe we have become accustomed to it. There is no heating, no hot water, broken tiles, broken toilets, poor drainage, the fittings haven’t been changed in over 35 years.” he claimed. “You have to ask if this is acceptable in 2013?”
A long-time user of the facility, he says watching his daughter shake under the freezing shower forced him to speak out and sparked the online campaign.
The dad says after waiting for a free shower in the changing rooms, he was shocked by the water’s “freezing cold” temperature.
“I spoke with the attendant who said we could use the showers in the health suite, but it was as bad there, the water turned very cold, very quickly,” he says.
He says his daughter was left “shaking, freezing and at the risk of pneumonia”. And he says the incident put alleged “lack of investment and dire conditions” at the Complex into perspective.
“What happened last week angered me as a parent, it is just not good enough. As parents we have a responsibility to speak out. Why should a city of this size put up with facilities from 1976?
“Every child in this town should have access to good leisure facilities, not the draconian facilities at Templemore.”
He says the Facebook page, ‘Templemore Sports Complex an insult to our children’, set up in the wake of Friday’s incident, has quickly garnered support.
“It’s about turning up the heat on Derry City Council.
“There are all sorts of people on there registering their disgust at the facilities, ” Mr Bryce said.
A Derry City Council spokeswoman says the local authority are aware of the “social media site and the issues that have been raised on it by members of the public”.
“In the main these issues are to do with maintenance and are in the process of being addressed.
“Derry City Council is currently investigating a number of potential options with regard to leisure provision in the city and region. However, these options have to date not been finalised or formally discussed, therefore it is premature to speculate about future options,” she says.
What do you think of the Complex? What’s been your experience of the centre? Leave us a comment below