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Swimmer's mind-goggling dilemma as he is banned from pool

PUBLISHED: 13:20 22 September 2008 | UPDATED: 15:24 07 September 2010

Roland Grimm outside Swiss Cottage Swimming Pool, where bosses have banned his extravagant eyewear

Roland Grimm outside Swiss Cottage Swimming Pool, where bosses have banned his extravagant eyewear

By Tan Parsons A veteran swimmer has been barred from using the pool at Swiss Cottage – for wearing eccentric goggles. Roland Grimm, who lives just off West End Lane, has been swimming at the leisure centre for 30 years. But he was unceremoniously dumpe

By Tan Parsons

A SWIMMER has been barred from using the pool at Swiss Cottage - for wearing eccentric goggles.

Roland Grimm, who lives just off West End Lane, has been swimming at the leisure centre for 30 years.

But on Monday he was unceremoniously dumped out of the pool for wearing non-shatterproof goggles that cover his face and nose.

The special brand of underwater eyewear stops water going up his nose and has a single eyepiece, which does not press against his face. Leisure-centre bosses decided the apparatus did not meet safety standards.

But Mr Grimm claimed: "I've used these goggles in more than 100 different pools in countries including Germany, Spain, France and Portugal."

"No one else has ever complained or questioned why I am using them. They say I'm not allowed to wear them here because they cover my nose but they just don't seem to like the shape of the frame.

"I'm upset because it seems mad. I like to swim every day and this is messing up my life."

Bosses at the pool have defended their decision to eject Mr Grimm from the pool, saying that non-shatterproof lenses are against industry guidelines.

"Non-shatterproof panels in enclosed environments can cause facial injury on impact with pool surfaces or other bathers and may pose a further hazard in relation to broken glass remaining on the pool floor," said centre manager Gary Dark.

"Full face masks that cover the nose can also cause breathing difficulties if water is swallowed and may restrict vision, which can cause an accident."

He said he would like Mr Grimm to keep swimming at the pool and would welcome the chance to speak to him to find a solution.

The swimmer is now looking to appeal against the ruling on the grounds that it is entirely unreasonable.

"After you've been swimming for 40 years you know what works best and what's safe," said Mr Grimm.

"The last thing I would want to do is put myself or anyone else in danger. My lenses are plastic."

tan.parsons@hamhigh.co.uk

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