In 2015, the residents of the small town of Cumnock in Scotland took over their local swimming pool after the local council announced plans to close it due to budget cuts. The swimming pool had been a popular community resource for over 40 years, and its closure was met with strong opposition from local residents.
The residents formed a community group called the Cumnock Action Group, which secured funding from grants and donations to purchase the swimming pool from the local council. The community group now manages the swimming pool, including staffing, programming, and maintenance.
Since the takeover, the Cumnock swimming pool has become a thriving community hub, offering a wide range of swimming and fitness programs for residents of all ages. The community group has also been able to keep membership fees affordable, while ensuring the long-term sustainability of the swimming pool.
The success of the Cumnock Action Group in taking over their local swimming pool has demonstrated the ability of communities to provide essential services, such as recreational facilities, without the involvement of local government. It has also provided a model for other communities in Scotland and beyond that are facing similar issues with public service cuts.