Black Hill Aquatic Centre provides escape from hot weather

DIVE IN: Wayne Crooks and daughter, Mackenzey, nine, make a splash at the Black Hill Aquatic Centre. Picture: Dylan Burns.
DIVE IN: Wayne Crooks and daughter, Mackenzey, nine, make a splash at the Black Hill Aquatic Centre. Picture: Dylan Burns.

Black Hill Aquatic Centre has come to the rescue of Ballarat residents looking for relief from the city’s first week of summer heat.

Swimmers were offered respite from the 25-degree heat on Sunday, when the pool opened than its expected December 2 opening.

Ballarat City Council’s decision to open early was welcomed by families, with the temperature predicted to hit 30 degrees on Tuesday.

Wendouree resident Wayne Crooks and his daughter Mackenzey were at the Black Hill pool after it opened at noon on Sunday.

Mr Crooks said they had decided to take the opportunity for a swim after they saw on social media the pool would open early.

“It is a good opportunity for the kids to have something to do during summer,” he said.

“There are only a couple of pools left in the area, so it is good to have it open.

“It is a little bit cold, but good, so we’ll probably be back on the weekends.”

For the remainder of the pool season the Black Hill centre will open 12pm-7pm on weekends and 3pm-7pm on weekdays.

However it will shut if the temperature drops below 23 degrees.

Eureka Aquatic Centre is closed until mid-December. Picture: Lachlan Bence

Eureka Aquatic Centre is closed until mid-December. Picture: Lachlan Bence

​The early launch followed the closure of the Eureka Aquatic Centre after council discovered major leaks in the Stawell Street South pool.

Council had guaranteed to open the pull on November 4, after leaks were repaired earlier this year, however more problems were discovered in the lead up to the opening.

It will be shut until mid-December while a contractor works on the issue.

Black Hill’s pool faced its own challenges after council voted to close it in 2014 following the development of a new pool strategy.

However fierce community backlash later saw that decision overturned following another council meeting in 2015.

The Black Hill Progress Association provided costings that showed council had inflated the cost of running the pool, and claimed it could be done for $90,000 less than estimated.

The city’s remaining two pools at Brown Hill and Buninyong are set to open on Saturday December 2.