Children at a Stevenage primary school can now learn to swim in the playground, thanks to a pop-up pool.

More than 300 pupils at Martins Wood Primary School are having lessons in their own 32ft x 16ft heated pool, which is housed in a marquee and comes with changing room facilities.

The pool was supplied by Elite Swimming, which also provides a qualified instructor, and will be onsite for six weeks, with lessons supervised by a lifeguard. 

The Comet: The pool will be onsite for six weeks.The pool will be onsite for six weeks. (Image: Ivy Learning Trust)

Jan Figueiredo, head of school at Martins Wood, said: "The children used to swim at a local leisure centre. However, this is costly and it meant that we could only take one year group, so it limited the number of children taking part. We wanted to explore other options and we discovered how well the pop-up pool was working at other schools. 

"The pool was installed at Martins Wood over the Easter holidays and the children returned to find it ready for lessons. Since then, they’ve been having regular lessons, with some classes swimming daily. Not only does this teach them essential water safety and swimming techniques, it’s also great exercise and a huge amount of fun.

"Having our own pool is less disruptive to learning because pupils can swim and be back at their desks within an hour.

"The children are enjoying their lessons immensely. Even those who were nervous at first are now growing in confidence, and it’s wonderful to see the smiles on their faces as they learn to swim.

"They’re really thriving and it’s been a brilliant addition to the school."