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Community Pool Swims Into The Spotlight As Part Of National Business Campaign
Leeds’ community-run Edwardian bath house, Bramley Baths, is starring in a new short film as part of Power to Change’s national campaign in the run-up to Community Business Weekend.

The two minute film follows Chief Executive Sue Stones and the team of staff, volunteers and local community groups that came together to save the bath house after Leeds City Council budget constraints meant that they could no longer continue to operate from the site.

The film is being released in the run-up to Community Business Weekend, a national open doors event that runs from May 16th to 19th and encourages communities to learn more about the benefits of their local community business and how they can get involved.

Since moving into community hands six years ago, Bramley Baths’ services have expanded to include a range of fitness and wellbeing classes that bring local people together and tackle some of society’s biggest issues including loneliness, isolation and mental health.

Joe Kent, Assistant Operations Director at Barca Leeds said: “The value of the baths goes way beyond a simple financial sum. It’s part of the fabric of the community. It’s intergenerational and enables families to come together for fun and activities and to help them stay healthy - both physically and mentally.”

The leisure centre which originally opened in 1904 is the only remaining Grade II listed bath house in the region. Today, just as 100 years ago, local residents can enjoy the swimming pool, with all profits reinvested for the local community by providing an inclusive fitness, fun and wellbeing centre for local residents.



Alongside the timetabled swim and aqua aerobics classes, the film also shines a light on Bramley Mermaids, a regular creative swimming and water dance class inspired by synchronized swimming techniques and Hollywood films.

The short film launches this week as part of a national campaign to support Community Business Weekend (16th-19th May), a national open doors event run by independent trust Power to Change that aims to shine a light on how community businesses across the country are helping to tackle some of society’s biggest problems.

In 2018 more than 17,000 people visited 225 community businesses over the course of the event. Many of these visitors are now volunteers, regular customers and even shareholders of those businesses.

To mark this year’s Community Business Weekend, Bramley Baths are inviting local residents in for a tour of the Grade II listed building and an opportunity to join CEO Sue Stones for tea, coffee and cake and to ask any questions relating to the Baths as a business and becoming a member or volunteer.

Speaking about Community Business Weekend, Power to Change CEO Vidhya Alakeson said: “The beauty of community business is that anyone can get involved, from setting one up, to becoming a shareholder, trustee, volunteer, employee or valued customer. One of our core priorities at Power to Change is to help communities to harness the skills, leadership and entrepreneurialism that already exist at the local level. Community Business Weekend is a great way to both celebrate and uncover the skills that can bring vibrancy and economic growth to local areas.”

For more information, visit: www.communitybusinessweekend.org and www.bramleybaths.com

Community Pool Swims Into The Spotlight As Part Of National Business Campaign, 10th April 2019, 20:15 PM