Mansfield to honour Olympic hero
The swimming centre where Olympic gold-medal hero Rebecca Adlington first learned to swim is set to be renamed in her honour.
Sherwood Swimming Baths in Mansfield Woodhouse will undergo a £4.5million refurbishment starting in January and is now set to re-open as the Rebecca Adlington Swimming Centre in September 2009.
Rebecca first learned to swim at Sherwood Baths from the age of six before progressing through the Mansfield District Council / Notts County Council swimming development programme and on to Olympic glory.
As a further honour, Mansfield District Council's Executive Mayor, Tony Egginton is to propose that the Freedom of Mansfield be bestowed upon Rebecca – the ultimate accolade the District can award an individual or group.
Both honours are subject to Rebecca's and Full Council agreement, although Mayor Egginton has already received the thumbs up from Rebecca's parents and the leaders of all the Council's political groups.
Mayor Egginton said: "We'll soon be embarking on an exciting £4.5million revamp of Sherwood Baths so we thought it would be wholly appropriate to rename it the Rebecca Adlington Swimming Centre, especially as it is the place where Rebecca made those first tentative steps into swimming.
"Rebecca is a fantastic ambassador for Mansfield both in and out of the pool and we hope that this is the first of many Gold medals.
"The renamed Sherwood Baths will be a permanent reminder of Rebecca's Olympic success and we hope it can also serve as an inspiration to other young swimmers to strive to match her incredible achievements."
The Sherwood Baths refurbishment includes an extension of the current four-lane pool to six lanes, new changing rooms, a larger gymnasium facility with specific changing rooms for the gym (gym users currently share changing facilities with pool users) and a new multi-purpose room on the first floor.