Autumn 2021: Information and FAQs
UPDATE: 17 SEPTEMBER
Thank you to all our swimmers for their support this summer. It’s been great to be back. Our rapids and paddling pool have now closed for the summer season – but our lido is staying open for a limited additional season, every Tuesday and Thursday evening throughout September!
We know that our customers have appreciated the Covid safety measures we’ve put in place to keep them safe. We’ve worked incredibly hard to offer safe, socially-distanced swimming for as many people as possible, and appreciate your patience and support over the past 18 months. In common with other pools and leisure facilities, we will now act responsibly to take this next step slowly, keeping safety at the centre of our operation.
Now, more than ever, we want to reassure you that customer and staff safety remains our top priority when planning our full reopening. We are bound not only by government guidelines, but also by Swim England guidance, combined with our own risk assessments. We monitor this guidance as it evolves and will update you on our website or social media with any changes as we move through the rest of 2021.
What’s staying the same?
We’re continuing to offer prebooked sessions. Feedback has been overwhelmingly positive for our booking system. Swimmers appreciate being able to beat the queue and plan their day. It also allows us to spread the demand on the pool throughout the day, and offer fair access to everyone. We’re continuing to operate with a significantly lower capacity so that there’s plenty of space for everyone to keep their distance from other swimmers.
Tickets should be prebooked online through our booking system www.bookwhen.com/favershampools. We are unable to offer refunds or exchanges.
We are able to offer a limited number of on-the-door walk-in tickets, if capacity allows. This means that if there’s space, you can just turn up and swim. If we don’t have capacity, you’re welcome to wait until there’s space for you. We adhere to strict capacity limits for safety reasons. You’ll need to make sure you leave enough time to complete your swim and change before the end of the session.
Thanks to incredible demand, we’re making our Inclusive Disability Swim sessions a permanent addition on Tuesdays/Thursdays 9-10am. These sessions are reserved for swimmers with additional needs, who can enjoy safe, accessible swimming with a reduced capacity in our indoor pool.
Adults’ early morning sessions are available Mon/Weds/Fri/Sat, 6.30am-8.45am. These will also have a reduced capacity to enable swimmers to keep their distance from other users.
September Sunset Swims will take place every Tuesday and Thursday evening in our lido, 4pm-7pm (8pm Thursdays). Prebooking essential; for over 16s only. The pool will be heated to approximately 25 degrees so wetsuits will not be required.
One thing hasn’t changed: your safety remains our priority.
We will continue to offer:
· Enhanced cleaning regime throughout the day plus intensive clean between sessions
· Distancing markers throughout the building to encourage you to keep your distance from other users
· Hand sanitiser available inside and out
· Cashless payment preferred
We strongly advise you to wear a face covering as you move around the pools buildings and changing area.
We also ask you to continue to arrive ‘pool-ready’ to avoid queues in the changing area, and shower at home if possible.
We’re now offering three daily timeslots: 9am-12pm, 12-3.30pm and 3.30pm-close. This allows us time to clean + sanitise the facility between sessions, on top of our usual enhanced cleaning regime.
We’ve made a couple of other changes this year. For safety reasons, the minimum age a child can swim unaccompanied by an adult is now 10. This means any under 10 will need an adult in the water with them. One adult can accompany up to 2 under 10s.
Also, all tickets are now sold with no readmission, so if you wish to leave the pools complex you’ll need to pay again to re-enter. This is to make sure as many people as possible are able to enjoy our pools this autumn. Spectator tickets are available at Reception.
· Tickets are non-refundable and cannot be exchanged. Please do not visit Faversham Pools if you, or any member if your household, is feeling unwell with any of the symptoms of Covid-19
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
How do I book?
Our booking page is here. Once on the booking site you will see session availability 7 days in advance, on a rolling basis.
Why can’t we book further in advance?
Booking 7 days in advance gives us the flexibility to make any required changes without disadvantaging customers who have booked further in advance. We also then have the ability to react to government guidance changing.
What measures have you put in place to keep customers safe?
As you move around the Pools building you’ll see certain changes:
- All sessions should be pre-booked and paid for online.
- If you need to make any payments at reception please use contactless where possible. While we can accept cash if there is no alternative we aim to become as cashless as possible.
- Each session is working to a reduced capacity to ensure swimmers can keep their distance from other users.
- Sanitising stations are available at intervals around the building and you will find Reception is now behind a safety screen.
- Directional signs and a one-way system will help to ensure your distance from other users.
- We ask swimmers to arrive on time for their pre-booked sessions as if you are early you will be asked to wait outside.
- All cleaning staff have been retrained and cleaning frequency significantly increased, particularly on high-touch areas. The whole complex is regularly deep-cleaned and cleanliness continues to be a very high priority for the team.
- Lifeguards have all been retrained in COVID-secure lifeguarding in line with new RLSS guidelines.
Our full risk assessment is available on request.
Why do we have to book?
The way pools are able to operate now has changed in the light of guidelines from the Government and Swim England, and our own pool risk assessment. We have set a new lower capacity for each session and the best way to control this is by pre-booking. We also then have an accurate record of customer details and, crucially, the times they’re at the pool in case they’re needed for Test & Trace. For our customers, it will provide them with the security of knowing their visit will be as safe as possible, and the ability to plan out their swims and reducing the risk of having to queue.
What is the booking system?
We are using Bookwhen to provide you with a safe and secure method of booking. Please visit www.bookwhen.com/favershampools to book.
What if I don’t have online access?
We know some people don’t have access to the internet. If you are unable to book online, we ask swimmers to telephone (01795 532426) in advance to check whether there is space for them at their desired time. Our receptionists can book you in over the phone using the same system as someone booking online, with the same prices and under the same terms.
Are you going cashless like other providers?
We are asking all customers to pay by contactless card if possible. We can still accept cash if there is no alternative, but strongly prefer contactless for your safety.
What if I book in for a session which I then can’t attend?
We ask you to log back into the booking page and cancel your booking, or if you are unable to do this please contact Reception on 01795 532426 who will be able to cancel it for you. Regrettably we are unable to offer refunds or exchanges, but if you cancel your booking it frees up the space for someone else to attend.
Can I come on a ticket booked in someone else’s name?
No, tickets are sold for a specific person with their name and contact details recorded at the time of booking. This is to ensure we comply with the guidance from Swim England and the NHS Test and Trace requirements.
Can I buy a season ticket?
An autumn season ticket is now available from 1 September – 31 December, at a cost of £144.50. To purchase, pop into Reception with a small passport photo to purchase your season ticket. Once you have it, you can then book your swims in online. You must bring your season ticket with you when you visit.
Are the showers and changing rooms open?
Yes, showers, lockers and changing rooms are available but, if possible, we are asking swimmers to come ‘pool-ready’ with swimwear under their clothes, and shower at home.
Do I need to wear a face covering?
We strongly advise you to wear a face covering as you move around the pool buildings and changing area.
Can children swim in a general session?
Yes, since the government guidance has changed children can now swim in a general session. You no longer have to book a family session for your own household group or bubble. However, we do expect swimmers to maintain an adequate distance from other users and be respectful to their fellow pool users.
What facilities are open?
Our indoor main pool is open. We regret to say that our baby/learner pool is out of service until further notice, as there is a serious problem with the water circulation which cannot be easily fixed. Our lido will be available on Tuesday and Thursday evenings for September Sunset Swims, adults only 4pm-7pm (8pm Thurs).
What about lessons?
Individual lessons will continue through September. From 24 July Dolphin Swim School ceased to offer group lessons at Faversham Pools; lessons will be run in-house from early November.
Is Aquacise running as usual?
Aquacise is running on Tuesdays and Thursdays at 12 noon.
What are you offering for swimmers with disabilities?
Our new Inclusive Disability Swim sessions on Tuesday (9-10am) and Thursdays (9-10am) (all indoor) will offer swimmers with special educational needs or who live with disabilities the change to swim safely and in a distanced way. You need to book this session in advance. Carers are very welcome and are free of charge with appropriate ID.
I have a season ticket, how do I book?
You will find a ‘season ticket’ option within the session booking page which you should select, and remember to bring your season ticket with you when you come to the Pools. Season ticket holders do still need to book online to attend swim sessions. Season tickets allow half price entry for Sunset Swims, at £3 for season ticket holders. You must bring your season ticket when you come swimming.
What are the prices?
What if there is a thunderstorm when I’m due to swim in the lido?When lightning is detected in the vicinity of the lido then the pools will be cleared and/or session start times delayed. A safe return to the pools will only be allowed once the lightning has moved away and a minimum of 30 minutes has elapsed from the last lightning strike.
We will endeavour to ensure that you get at least 60 minutes of pool time during your swim session. If your session is shorter than 60 minutes as a result of thunderstorms then you will be issued a voucher.
We cannot issue refunds. We will instead issue vouchers to the value of your ticket(s) which can be redeemed through our booking website.
Risk of pool closure caused by staff shortages
Given the rising case numbers throughout the country, and increasing potential for staff to be asked to self-isolate due to close contact with a positive case, we recognise that there is a risk of temporary closure if we are unable to meet minimum staffing requirements. Despite extensive contingency plans it is therefore possible that we might have to close the Pools at short notice if we are unable to provide sufficient staff to operate the pool safely. In this eventuality we would offer a full refund to all bookers.
I have feedback, how can I get in touch?
We expect our Reception team to be very busy during the day as they deal with ticketing and customers arriving for their timeslot. We therefore ask that you email any feedback or questions to email@example.com who will be able to assist you. If your query relates to ticketing or if you’re unable to book online, please contact Reception on 01795 532426.