Save Our Swimming

by Grove Vale Primary School in Birmingham, West Midlands, United Kingdom

We did it
On 31st March 2023 we successfully raised £26,496 with 271 supporters in 42 days

Our pool needs major essential maintenance to increase it's lifespan, ensuring it's access to children and adults within the local community

by Grove Vale Primary School in Birmingham, West Midlands, United Kingdom

 New stretch target

All funding raised will go towards match funding in the hope that we can keep the pool open and reach our goals. 

Who are we?

We are Grove Vale Primary School.  A proud Sandwell school offering provision for 421 pupils in Great Barr, Birmingham. Our aim is to provide a welcoming, nurturing and caring environment where our pupils can flourish and exceed their potential in all aspects of their development, our motto devised by a pupil is 'Together We Grow'

Our diligent, committed and enthusiastic team proudly embody this vision on a daily basis, creating a learning environment full of high expectation, care and ambition for all learners. We grow together with Grace, Valour, Pride, Success empowering our ambitious pupils to strive to be the very best they can be in partnership with parents, governors and the community.


Community Impact

Very few schools now have onsite swimming facilities.

‘The pool is a vital community asset. It ensures children learn to swim, and it provides the community the opportunity to be physically active.’ (Parent Friends Association member).

We are in a privileged position as we have a swimming pool on site, our pupils and local community have benefited from the pool over many wonderful years. It is with sadness however, our pool has been out of use for a considerable amount of time, due to existing and immediate maintenance issues, predominantly relating to the mechanical installation.

'Swimming is such an important life skill and it is fantastic my child is able to go swimming weekly at the school.  She was so disappointed when her sessions stopped.' (Parent at the school)

The pool has been closed since Christmas 2021 (over a year), so pupils are not currently accessing any lessons, before the pool was closed all our pupils access swimming on a weekly basis, and once it has been refurbished they will access it on a weekly basis again.  Whilst the pool has will be ‘temporarily fixed’ we need to ensure the extended lifespan of the pool. 


Images; ceiling is leaking and falling in, also steps are unsafe

There is a local canal running through the estate of Grove Vale and lake area in Red House Park, which is adjacent to our school, water safety is a vitally important part of the community. 

We have employed a highly skilled swimming teacher for the last 18 years who works closely with the local community to provide high quality swimming lessons to independent swimming clubs and families around the area. She also plays a big part for the wraparound care within the community during school holidays when the pool is used for theme and sports days for all to be involved. 

We are very proud and aware of the importance of school swimming and as a result, our pool also benefits the wider community through lettings.

‘KSA Swim School have been providing swimming lessons to children and their families at Grove Vale School. We were devastated to hear that the pool had to close. Since the closure-children of the surrounding area have been forced to stop swimming lessons, not only impacting a life skill but also the health and wellbeing of families within the area. We are keen to support the local community in able to get the swimming pool building reinstated so we can continue the good work for the sake of local children and their families.’ (Tony Kilday - Group CEO, Kick Start Academy)

We are aware of the lack of swimming pools in the local area and it can be very difficult for local people to get to the nearest swimming pools (Walsall Gala Baths 3.1 miles away and West Bromwich Leisure centre 3.0 miles away), especially for families that cannot drive and/or afford public transport. This leads to great sense of health inequalities within the community with lots of families unable to easily access swimming pools. Slots for school swimming lessons have been a challenge to secure as demand is so high. As a result of that we do have many requests to hire our pool and swimming teacher. We had another school use the facilities on a regular basis as well as two swimming schools who were using our pool every night after school and at the weekends.

Our Aims

  • To refurbish the pool (and surrounding area) so that it can start to be used again, and is able to be used long term, ensuring a lasting legacy for aquatics.
  • Develop life long swimming habits and promote a healthy lifestyle.

’My children don’t go to Grove Vale, but we live quite close.  The school they go to used to have a swimming pool but sadly it closed.  It’s great there is still another pool in the local area but if this pool shut I would not be able to take my children swimming.  They both learnt to swim in this pool and it’s really important they have as there is lots of open water locally.  This facility is really important to the local community.’  (Parent of swim school)

Why are we crowdfunding?

The pool needs major essential maintenance to ensure its longevity as a valuable asset within the local community.   Without this the pool faces closure in the near future. 

We need the community to support us with this project, as our swimming pool is such a vital facility to the community.   Get involved in this project to help us maintain the pool.  

How Our Project will be United by Birmingham 2022 

On the back of the Commonwealth Games (which were only ‘down the road’ from us) we want to create a lasting legacy through swimming.  Birmingham 2022 was an absolute success and swimming was big part of that too.  The games inspired both children and adults to be active, and get swimming. We want to use the pool to keep the communities interest in sport and help the community get active using the CWG legacy. 


 Image; Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth games, Swimming in Sandwell – Inspiring our community

Schools budgets as well as LA budgets are shrinking and as school, we are unable to fund the project without intervention and your support.

We have been actively reaching out to Swim England and working with the Education team and School Repair Account engineers and surveyors to extend the life of the facility for the foreseeable future. The estimated cost to repair the swimming pool and future proof for ten years is £262k.  The school has supported this with phase one, however we can not cannot achieve the levels required for phase two without partners and community stakeholders.

Crowdfunding support will then act as a catalyst to raise further funding to support match funding opportunities. 

Moving forwards with this project safeguards swimming provision for our local community over the next ten years, improving outcomes for our children at a time when only 4 out of 10 Sandwell children can swim 25m by the end of KS2. 

Simply put, thousands of children over the 10 years will be able to benefit from the local pool, a legacy for our local area.

How we’ll spend the money raised

Phase one will soon be complete and the pool will be opened up again to pupils in March 2023 due to the school securing funding and completing the work needed. 

We now need to raise money to start phase 2.  The works for phase 2 can go ahead whilst the pool is open, but these works will improve functionality and the aesthetics of the pool environment to ensure that the building and pool stay open and fresh for at least the next 10 years.  

If we can secure at least £20,000 from crowdfunding, we will still need to raise more funds to complete phase 2, however the £20,000 can be put towards vital match funding opportunities to reach our target and complete phase two. The cost for phase two is in the region of £100,000! 

Image; Drained pool with removed ceiling and exposed roof, current changing rooms


We now need your help to reach our target for phase two!

All contributions will help the school to bid for match funding.  We are hopeful that through crowdfunding, fund raising and donations from different sources, we will be able to raise enough funds to go towards match funding opportunities that will help us on our way to saving our swimming pool.   

We know everyone is ‘feeling the pinch’ and we appreciate that all budgets are tight, as is our own school budget.  However closing a swimming pool in an area where school swimming outcomes have declined in recent times, where the local swimming pool slots are limited, and where many families would be unable to fund private swimming lessons, within  a location with such a lot of open water, it would be remiss of us to not try to save our pool!

Once work is complete it will take Grove Vales pool forward for the next generation of swimmers.

So far we have managed to secure funds for phase one (in excess of over £150,000) but we need your help for phase two!  Phase two has an expected cost of £100,000 this crowdfunder will help greatly towards the final cost and opening up other avenues for funding.

Projects like this can take a long time but it’s important we get this right! A realistic target is by the end of 2024.  We have raised significant funds already but we need to raise more after this crowdfunder.  We hope this financial commitment already made gives you the confidence to support our project.

How you can play your part?

There are four simple ways to help us reach our target, and make this project a reality.

1. Make a pledge. Don’t delay if you’re going to support us because momentum is key to our success!

2. Spread the word. Share our project on your social media pages and tell the world to get behind us! The more people we reach, the more support we will get.

3. Create a fundraiser of your own. If you want to run your own fundraiser to support us, maybe a sponsored activity or similar, use the 'contact project' button at the top of our page to let us know. Setting up your own page only takes a few minutes and you won’t need any bank details. Just a fun idea!

4. Rewards. Head over to the rewards section to see what's on offer.

To contact us press the "Contact the project" button at the top right of the page.


This project offers rewards in return for your donation. Please select a reward below.

£5 or more

1 of 10 claimed

Walsall FC match ticket

One match ticket for Walsall v Salford 22/4/23 (3pm ko) Followed by Walsall Women v Port Vale Women (6pm ko) Admission prices Adult/Senior/Young Person/Junior Main stand :£25/£19/£17/£11 Poundland stand middle and upper: £24/£18/£17/£11 Community stand: £24/£18/£17/£11 Poundland stand lower: : £20/£17/£17/£11

£5 or more

0 of 6 claimed

Tennis Coaching Session

Mini tennis session (minimum age 4years) or Junior one hour group coaching session, or adult 90minutes coaching session Full price: Mini tennis or Junior session £6.00 Adult session £12.55 Venue; Tipton Sports academy, DY4 0BS Session is indoor and all equipment provided. Voucher code e-mailed and contact provider to book

£15 or more

0 of 4 claimed

Body Sculpting - 60% off one area

60% off a body sculpting treatment - one area to choose from, Arms, Inner Thighs, Stomach Usual price £130 with this voucher £52 This helps with inch loss and skin tightening Alternatively 10% off any treatment of your choice, including fat dissolving injections and lip filler At La Bella Aesthetics @flitz salon 87a Chester Road Sutton Coldfield Birmingham B73 5BA

£30 or more

6 of 12 claimed

20% off Mitchells & Butlers

20% off total bill Expires 31/1/24 Can be used at; Harvester, Toby Carvery, Miller and Carter, Vintage Inns, Ember Inns, Sizzling, O’Neills, Stonehouse, Browns To be collected from school reception

£3 or more

2 of 2 claimed

10% off Heather Road Florist

10% off Heather Road Florist Minimum order £35 Order must be paid via bank transfer or PayPal to receive discount.

£5 or more

4 of 4 claimed

Aston Villa Women Match Ticket

1 match ticket for Aston Villa Women v Chelsea Women 2nd April 2023 at Bescot Stadium Admission Prices Adult £10 Under 18 £7.50 Under 14 £5

£5 or more

1 of 1 claimed

£20 book voucher

Book voucher Provided by smile education. Provider to be contacted via details and physical voucher sent

£8 or more

1 of 1 claimed

Queslett Pub

£10 voucher card Expires 20/1/24 To be collected from school reception

£8 or more

1 of 1 claimed

Just Play Family Entrance

Family entrance for up to 2 children and 2 adults Expires 30/9/23 To be collected from school reception Full price for 2 children aged 1-11 years and two spectators £14

£8 or more

2 of 2 claimed

Spacehoppas Family pass

Two hour play session 2 Adults and 2 Children To be collected from school reception Full price based on two children aged 3 and over and two adults, Weekends and School & Bank Holidays £11.90

£10 or more

1 of 1 claimed

Afternoon Tea for One at Fairlawns Hotel and Spa

Enjoy an afternoon tea at Restaurant 178. Traditional finger sandwiches plus scones with cream and jam, cakes and tea or coffee. Available Tuesday-Saturday, 12:30-3pm Expiry date 10/2/24 Phone to book

£20 or more

1 of 1 claimed

Ninja Warrior UK - Walsall

£24 voucher for activity, Plus 2x headbands, socks, gloves, set of wristbands (to be collected at site) Expires 20/1/24 To be collected from school reception

£25 or more

1 of 1 claimed

Tenpin - 6 games

6 individual games. Standard adult game full individual price £7.25 T&C Only available from 6pm Sunday to 6pm Friday Not available during School or Bank Holidays Expires 20th April 2023 To be collected from school reception

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