Cockroaches discovered at poolside of Hitchin Swimming Centre

PUBLISHED: 17:27 27 November 2019 | UPDATED: 17:27 27 November 2019

NHDC's Environmental Health are working to eradicate cockroaches seen at Hitchin Swimming Centre in recent weeks. Picture: Google Street View

NHDC's Environmental Health are working to eradicate cockroaches seen at Hitchin Swimming Centre in recent weeks. Picture: Google Street View

Archant

Parents have been left 'horrified' and 'disgusted' after a cockroach infestation was discovered at Hitchin Swimming Centre.

NHDC's Environmental Health officers have visited the pool in the past few weeks, while pest control have also been called in to help "eradicate" the bugs.

Pool director Sam Ospalak has reassured swimmers that the pool remains "safe to use", and confirmed the problem is being "monitored."

The cockroaches were first spotted at the poolside of the indoor facility in early November, by the blue plastic seating - which has now been folded back for safety reasons.

One local mother - who's children attend regular lessons at the centre - noticed the infestation while sitting by the poolside, and was "completely horrified" by the sight.

"When you think of cockroaches you think of all sorts of awful things," she said. "I was immediately concerned whether it was safe for my kids to be using the pool.

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"Having cockroaches crawling around on the floor, touching the same ground and same space as children crawling around on the floor - is absolutely terrifying."

The mother - who wishes to remain anonymous - has already paid for her children's swimming lessons at the pool, and wants "further reassurance that it is safe for them to use."

"I hope the centre is prompted to take urgent action and do more than just 'monitor' and 'look after' the bugs", she added,

"Perhaps they could also ensure that the place is cleaned more regularly and more thoroughly as the floors are filthy and the toilets and showers are disgusting."

Ian Fullstone, service director for regulatory at NHDC said: "Our Environmental Health team visited the Hitchin Swimming Centre and carried out a number of thorough inspections of the site.

"They confirmed that evidence of cockroach activity was found at the poolside. A number of actions have been given to the centre, including some cleaning and maintenance tasks that will help to eradicate them from this area of the Swimming Centre.

"Stevenage Leisure Limited and their pest control contractor are already acting upon these recommendations.

"We will continue to work closely with staff at the centre to monitor progress and reach a positive outcome."

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