Burnham-On-Sea Swim and Sports Academy has received a major boost this week as its owners announce a new partnership with a nationwide firm that operates dozens of leisure facilities around the UK.
The academy, based in Berrow Road, has attracted the attention of Parkwood Leisure which currently manages more than 80 facilities on behalf of 31 local authorities throughout England and Wales and they will take over the running of the Swim and Sports Academy from December 1st.
Burnham-On-Sea Swim & Sports Academy owners Mark and Sara Cox-Conklin, pictured, say: “Starting from 1st December 2021, the Academy is excited to announce a new partnership with Parkwood & Legacy Leisure that will ensure the sustainability of the Burnham-On-Sea Swim & Sports Academy for years to come.”
“Parkwood & Legacy share the same values on which the Swim & Sports Academy was founded and have committed to investing in the staff, community and facilities to grow the programmes and offerings, and take the Academy to the next level!”
In April 2008, the Burnham Pool (pictured below when the couple took it over) was closed as budget cuts within the council could not sustain the facility. Mark and Sara Cox-Conklin formed the Swim & Sports Academy and took over the former council-run pool on June 21st, 2008, with the sole purpose of saving the facilities.
Mark and Sara adds: “Over the last 13 years, due to the amazing support of the community, and the passion and hard work of the team, the former Burnham Pool expanded to include a Health Club, Gym, retail shop & Starbucks café. In 2012 the Swim Academy earned the accolade of being the Number 1 Swim School in the Country.”
“Now, it is a thriving Swim Academy – with over 1000 children taking lessons each week – a Swim Team with seven squads from potential through to national, A Triathlon Academy and a host to numerous events from Swimming, Running, Triathlon and Multisport for both the local community and nationally.”
“The Academy employs a team of over 40 staff. The growth of the Academy has been beyond phenomenal and today it needs the vision and experience of Parkwood & Legacy, one of the largest leisure operators in the UK to support the workforce – all existing staff will be guaranteed their jobs and will be backed up by a larger support team – and ensure the community has access to happier and healthier lifestyles.”
“On December 1st, 2021, the Swim & Sports Academy will be operating as usual with all programmes in place, powered by Parkwood & Legacy Leisure bringing opportunities, plus plans and initiatives to take the Academy into 2022 and beyond.”
Cllr Duncan McGinty, Leader of Sedgemoor District Council, says: “We are pleased to see the Burnham-On-Sea Swim & Sports and Swim Academy going from strength to strength and applaud Sara and Mark for the sterling work they have done over the past thirteen years to build the Academy into the successful company it is today.”