It was announced today that the much anticipated public reopening of the Royal Commonwealth Pool is set for Wednesday 21 March 2012.

Royal Commonwealth Pool artist impression

The £37m refurbishment by GRAHAM Construction is opening as expected in Spring 2012 after a two and a half year construction project which has transformed the ‘Commie’ pool into one of the UK’s premier aquatics facilities.

Former Olympic swimming champion, David Wilkie, will officially open the pool at a special ceremony, in front of an invited audience, the day before, which will feature aquatics displays by several well-known athletes.

The council agreed at the November 1 2011 meeting of the Finance and Resources Committee to commit the sum of £165,000 to the provision of 13 car parking spaces at the newly refurbished pool.

Councillor Deidre Brock, Culture and Leisure Convener, said: “I’m absolutely delighted to be able to announce the reopening of our much loved Royal Commonwealth Pool following its painstaking refurbishment. This has been an incredibly complex engineering project which has transformed the Grade A-listed RCP into a truly world class aquatics facility. We know huge excitement is building across the city and beyond as people look forward to rediscovering – or indeed discovering – their beautifully modernised RCP, and we can’t wait to welcome them back!”

Edinburgh Leisure Chief Executive John Comiskey said: “The Royal Commonwealth Pool has long been one of the most popular leisure venues in Edinburgh and we are immensely proud to be managing the facility once again, when it re-opens to the public on the 21st March. We have put in place a fantastic team of staff who will be ready and waiting to welcome our customers – old and new – back through the doors of their beloved ‘Commie Pool’ once again.”

The City of Edinburgh Council, along with sportscotland, has funded the massive renovation and refurbishment programme that has seen the building stripped back to the bare shell and rebuilt, whilst retaining all the listed features of the A-listed 20th century building.

Stewart Harris, Chief Executive of sportscotland, said: “We’re delighted to have part-funded this exciting project. As an organisation, one of our priorities is to promote the positive power of sport, and the extensive refurbishment of the Royal Commonwealth Pool will provide the people of Edinburgh, and further afield, with a world-class facility. It means Scotland’s swimmers – of all ages and abilities – will have another superb training and competition venue at their disposal. “

The new features will include:

  • a 50m, eight-lane pool for community and specialist swimming use with a boom capable of subdividing the pool into two areas;
  • a re-orientated 25m diving pool up to 5m deep with moveable floor which can be used for swimming when not in use for diving;
    a dry dive facility including trampoline and springboards to allow divers to practise out of the pool;
  • a 25m pool with moveable floor to accommodate warm-up provision, swimming lessons and informal play utilising pool toys;
  • new dry soft play facilities;
  • a refurbished and expanded gym and fitness studios; and
  • a refurbished and redesigned changing village, meeting and conference rooms

The RCP will host the diving events as part of the Glasgow 2014 Commonwealth Games and the British Swimming squad have selected the facility as the venue for their final training camp in July 2012 ahead of the London Olympics.