Merrylands Swimming Club last week was granted regular use of the new Merrylands swimming centre, recently opened by Mayor of Holroyd, Ald. R. W. Devlin.
Holroyd Council agreed to allow the club the use of the centre for races on Friday nights in the months of December, January and February.
Consideration will later be given for use of the pool by the club in September, October, November, March and April, if the club so desires.
Club president and amteur coach, Mr. J. G. Earl, of Lucerne Avenue, Merrylands, said the club would hold regular activities.
He invited boys and girls of all ages, and parents, to join the club.
Club officers were elected recently, and in five weeks membership rose to 120.
Meetings will be held on the second Tuesday of each month in a clubroom at the swimming centre.
Further information can be obtained from club secretary, Mr. J. Lovell, of Frances Street, Merrylands, telephone 635 9607.
At the opening ceremony, hundreds of children cheered Ald. Devlin as he officially declared "open house" at the swimming centre.
Within minutes of the doors being opened, the three pools were packed with youngsters enjoying a day's free swimming.
Earlier, Ald. Devlin had welcomed fellow aldermen and guests to the ceremony.
Guests included State Member for Merrylands, Mr. L. J. Ferguson, and Mrs. Ferguson, and former Mayor of Holroyd, Mr. G. Maunder.
Apologies were received from Federal Opposition Leader, Mr. Gough Whitlam, State Member for Granville, Mr. P. Flaherty, and Federal Member for Reid, Mr. T. Uren.
Ald. Devlin said the Merrylands centre was the second swimming facility completed by council in three years.
First centre was opened at Wentworthville.
"The centre covers an area of five acres and the Olympic pool is of the utility type, 50 metres long.
"This pool is 60 ft. wide and has eight lanes.
"It Is suitable for water polo, and I understand this will please students from Merrylands High School.", he said.
Also in the centre is a teaching pool, and a wading pool for children.
Centre-piece of the wading pool is a miniature whale.
Provision has been made in the layout of the $365,000 centre for a 25-metre training pool.
Change room accommodation is larger than the same facilities at Wentworthville pool.
The pools are surrounded by thick lawn, and one side is banked to give added protection from wind.
Council was able to provide the Wentworthville centre without in interfering with the general rate and hopes that it can also finance Merrylands pool in the same manner.
Merrylands Swimming Centre Appeal Committee raised $818 towards the cost of the centre.
The picture above shows the learners pool at Merrylands Swimming Centre, and part of the largre crowd attending the official opening. Features of the learners pool include the raised, railed surround, from which instructors can see clearly, and the shallow ends sloping to a deeper centre, allowing classes to use both ends at the same time. The main Olympic pool is to the right, the toddlers' pool to the left, and the administrative buildings in the right background.
The Mayor of Holroyd, Ald. R. W. Devlin, addresses 3000 people before he officially declares Merrylands Swimming Centre open. Mrs. Devlin is seated alongside her husband.
The Mayor of Holroyd, Ald. R. W. Devlin, unveils a plaque commemorating the official opening of Merrylands Swimming Centre.
The plaque contains the names of Holroyd Council aldermen and officers.
The aldermen are: A. L. Brierley, G. Cullis, F. S. Edwards. R. S. Grieve, H. L. Maley (deputy mayor), J. W. Masters, H. Read, P. S. J. Sammut, F. J. Smith, W. R. Try ond O. D. Young.
The officers' names on the plaque are those of the town clerk, Mr. P. A. Arnett, and the chief engineer, Mr. A. H. Alderson.
The swimming centre was built at a cost of $365,000.
The centre contains a main Olympic type pool, a training pool, and a wading pool for children.
Centre-piece of the wading pool, is a scale model of a whale.