PRIMARY schools in Ross-On-Wye may be left treading water for up to eight months with the pool used for swimming lessons set for a temporary closure.

A £2.2m renovation to Ross Swimming Pool will start in September and last up to 40 weeks.

Its gym will set up a temporary home elsewhere in the town, however the pool – which is used for lessons by the town’s primary schools – will close during the construction work.

Councillor Harry Bramer said: “I appreciate that this may cause some inconvenience for the people of Ross but urge the community to bear with us and look forward to what will be a fantastic new facility for the town.”

Halo – who run the centre – is in talks with Ashfield Park Primary School about the possibility of moving some of the lessons to the school’s small indoor pool.

However, with the construction work running from September to June, schools will have to find almost a full school year’s worth of pool-time.

Under the national curriculum all children leaving primary school must be able to swim 25 metres, however many schools have a more extensive programme involving lifesaving and swimming badges.

For large primaries like St Joseph’s Primary School in Ross, that means sending classes of up to 30 pupils at a time to the centre for swimming lessons.

However, when finished, the refurbished swimming pool, new changing facilities and spectator area will be among the improvements that will make Ross Swimming Pool a premier facility for future swimmers.