Following pressure from the Medway Labour and Co-operative Group, the conservative-led council have announced that free swimming sessions for under-16s will return as coronavirus restrictions begin to be lifted.

Last week, Cllr Andy Stamp, Medway Labour spokesperson for Regeneration and Communities urged the Council to announce when the scheme was to be reintroduced, after pools reopened without the policy following the easing of lockdown.

Whilst the Labour group were in full support of the measures relating to public health safety, concerns were raised that the removal of this policy would signify a permeant cut under the guise of Covid-19.

Deputy Leader of the Medway and Co-operative Group, Councillor Teresa Murray stated that, “I’m really pleased to see the council confirm that free swimming for under-16s will return. Particularly in the current obesity crisis, swimming is a brilliant way to enjoy exercise, and the free under-16s policy makes this considerably more viable for families in Medway with young children.

‘Public safety will always come first, but I am pleased that the Labour Group’s concerns have resulted in reassurances from the Council about the longevity of this policy.

‘Cuts to public services are already looming, and it is vital that free swimming for under-16s does not fall victim to this.’

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