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Haringey coaches say new leisure centre and pool is a slam dunk for Wood Green

PUBLISHED: 06:00 14 April 2017

Swim Development coach Nathan Joseph (far left) and Haringey Basketball coach Hesketh Benoit (far right) with athletes from TPL Basketball and Haringey Aquatics.

Swim Development coach Nathan Joseph (far left) and Haringey Basketball coach Hesketh Benoit (far right) with athletes from TPL Basketball and Haringey Aquatics.

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Two sports in Haringey have come together to petition for a new leisure centre and pool to be included in the Wood Green Regeneration Action Plan.

Haringey Basketball coach Hesketh Benoit, Haringey Aquatics head coach Paul Doyle and swim development coach Nathan Joseph are joining forces to petition for the new facility to be included in the plan, which is under public consultation with Haringey Council until April 28.

The coaches believe that Haringey Civic Centre, whose future is unknown, is the ideal location and vision for a sporting legacy in Wood Green.

And it has been backed by MPs David Lammy and Catherine West, schools such as Heartlands High as well as almost 600 signatories on Haringey Aquatics’ Change.org petition “A third swimming pool in Haringey”.

The forecast is the petition will hit the 1,000 mark by the deadline and the club say this demonstrates there is demand from residents for more access to sport in Wood Green and north London.

Whilst Camden, Hackney and Islington enjoy four pools each averaging 55-65,000 residents a pool, Haringey has only two pools for 267,541 residents, or 133,770 people to share a single pool.

Tottenham resident Doyle said: “We have been overwhelmed by the response. It is a fact that Haringey residents have access to a third less pool space than the average Londoner.

“But this issue is bigger than a pool and it is why I am joining forces with other Haringey Coaches, like Hesketh.

“With Wood Green, we have an opportunity here to create something visionary, something that offers sustainable jobs, gives locals easy access to sport in a safe environment and helps Haringey citizens lead healthier lives.”

Benoit, who leads Haringey’s “Community Against Violence” programme, views a leisure centre as pivotal to his anti-violence efforts.

“Through sport, in particular basketball offered at the TPL basketball courts [Ducketts Common], I have been able to give youth in Haringey an alternative to violence.

“That’s why this leisure centre is so important for the community. It will provide even more access to sporting facilities in Haringey offering Tottenham youth better and healthier lifestyle alternatives.”

For more information on the “third swimming pool in Haringey” petition, go to www.change.org/p/haringey-council-a-third-swimming-pool-in-haringey

For more information on Haringey Aquatics, visit www.haringeyaquatics.org.uk

For more on Haringey’s “Community Against Violence” programme, or TPL basketball, contact Hesketh Benoit on 07905 250 042.

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