Champion marks open season for all at the pool

Article image - Champion marks open season for all at the pool Mary Martin receives help from a young swimmer to demonstrate the new pelican hoist for Ian Thorpe and Mayor Robert Khan at the Wollondilly Leisure Centre.

Australian swimming champion Ian Thorpe joined Wollondilly Council, New South Wales, and locals at the Wollondilly Leisure Centre to welcome the installation of a new hoist which will provide greater accessibility to the pool.

Ian Thorpe inspected the new hoist with Mayor, Robert Khan while he was visiting the Centre for the launch of the swimming season last month.

Council recently installed the pelican pool hoist and upgraded the aqua wheelchair thanks to a $20,000 grant from Uniting Ability Links.

Community member, Mary Martin, who is a carer for a young person with a disability, highlighted the need for access upgrades after witnessing a local resident with significant mobility concerns, struggling to use the existing pool hoist. 

Mayor Khan said, “It is important that everyone in the community has access to our local swimming facilities, so the new pelican hoist is a welcome addition at the Wollondilly Leisure Centre.

“Council and the pool management were pleased to welcome such a well-loved Australian icon to help launch the hoist and also to mark an exciting start to the swimming season for our young local swimmers.

“It’s been a difficult year for Wollondilly, so I’m thrilled to see people of all ages and abilities able to enjoy the fun and exercise that the water provides.”