CAMPAIGNERS against the closure of Temple Cowley Pools have unleashed their secret weapon – folk legend Peggy Seeger.
The American singer, who lives in Iffley Village, has written and recorded a song about the pools, which Oxford City Council wants to close and replace with a multi-million-pound leisure centre in Blackbird Leys.
She also played a benefit gig for the campaign group Save Temple Cowley Pools on Sunday and will perform at another on Friday.
Ms Seeger, 77, said: “I swim at the pool and they were outside campaigning one day and I got interested.
“I had been swimming there for about 18 months, and I had no idea the council wanted to close it down. I’ve had an interest in local campaigns for 50 or 60 years, and it struck me I could help with it.”
She said she had realised there was “a lot of clout” behind the campaign, and claimed the council figures show there is a good case for keeping it open.
She said: “It’s the only pool I have found that has steps to walk down. I can’t use the ladders they have at other pools because they hurt my feet.
“What I’ve done is made a song. Singing brings people together and music brings people together.”
She said the song featured different verses written from the points of view of different pool users, like older people, children and mothers.
She said: “There are lots of different people who use the pool – it’s used by all age groups. The song is very easy to sing, and the committee helped me get local people to sing all the verses.”
Ms Seeger was born in the US in 1935 but lived in Kent for more than 30 years and married fellow folk singer Ewan MacColl.
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