Campaigners turn to prayer to protect community pool

Save Temple Cowley Pools campaign member Jane Alexander, right, with protesters outside Town Hall

Save Temple Cowley Pools campaign member Jane Alexander, right, with protesters outside Town Hall

First published in News

CAMPAIGNERS are hoping the power of prayer will help them to save Temple Cowley Pools.

In its latest move, the Save Temple Cowley Pools campaign has been seeking support from church congregations.

The Temple Road complex is to close because Oxford City Council says it is no longer fit for purpose and has decided to replace it with a new multi-million pound pool in Blackbird Leys.

According to campaigners, the Rev Tim Stead, of Headington Quarry Church, has agreed to lead the Cowley Deanery team with prayers during the morning service, at 17 churches in the deanery on Sunday, and mosques have been invited to join in.

The group is also hosting the Big Splash, a fundraising swim at the pool on the same day, from 3pm-5pm. Adults are invited to swim the length of the pool and make a donation to the campaign.

Campaigners have invited city council leader Bob Price, councillors and officers including chief executive Peter Sloman to join them.

Chaka Artwell, who lives in Barton, was among a group of campaigners who turned up at the town hall in St Aldate’s yesterday to invite councillors and staff to join the swim.

He said: “We have tried petition and protest so we thought we would try prayer as well.

“The Bishop of Oxford, along with the lively congregation of Pastor Derek Walker’s Oxford Bible Church, and the large congregation of the Christian Life Centre in Cowley Road, have also been invited to say prayers for the pool campaign.”

Oxford Mail:

The Rev Howard Thornton, rector of the parish of Cowley, above, who is based at St James’ Church in Beauchamp Lane, said: “We will definitely be mentioning the pool in our prayers. There are many people in our congregation who are very concerned about the future of the pool.

“Prayer always works – just not always the way you would like it to.”

Campaign spokesman Jane Alexander said: “We welcome the huge interest being shown by our religious leaders.”

The city council has been prevented from selling the site for six months after residents registered it as an Asset of Community Value.

The group has until October 7 to make a bid before that period expires and the council can put it on the market.

Mr Price was unavailable for comment on the issue last night.

LOOKING BACK ON THEIR BATTLE

Oxford Mail:

IN June, the fight to save Temple Cowley Pools gained heavyweight support when boxing champion David Haye gave his backing to the campaign group.
The 33-year-old former WBA heavyweight champion was told about the campaign by Cowley resident Salman Naqvi, a family friend.
Judicial review challenges were launched by both pool campaigners and residents in Blackbird Leys but both were unsuccessful.
In 2010, campaigners submitted a 12,000-name petition to the city council.
In March this year the campaign group nominated the site to be designated as an asset of community value.

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Comments (5)

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8:56am Wed 13 Aug 14

norton manor says...

this subject is getting boring! you lot have been given the opportunity to purchase the site under the 'community asset' plan. then put up you money and do it, don't keep on wasting time and effort haranguing the City Council. the ball is in you court, put you money where the mouth is
this subject is getting boring! you lot have been given the opportunity to purchase the site under the 'community asset' plan. then put up you money and do it, don't keep on wasting time and effort haranguing the City Council. the ball is in you court, put you money where the mouth is norton manor
  • Score: 11

9:34am Wed 13 Aug 14

Sandy Wimpole-Smythe says...

Persistent little beggars aren't they.
Persistent little beggars aren't they. Sandy Wimpole-Smythe
  • Score: 7

9:51am Wed 13 Aug 14

Dilligaf2010 says...

They've clearly lost the plot
They've clearly lost the plot Dilligaf2010
  • Score: 1

12:44pm Wed 13 Aug 14

Andrew:Oxford says...

Looks like we'll soon find out if the Omnipresent support "the cause" or not!

That's assuming they've sought support through the right channel to the Omnipresent... Should really have covered off all bases and invited the CofS, Catholic, Hindu, Sikh, Scientology & Jewish faiths too.
Looks like we'll soon find out if the Omnipresent support "the cause" or not! That's assuming they've sought support through the right channel to the Omnipresent... Should really have covered off all bases and invited the CofS, Catholic, Hindu, Sikh, Scientology & Jewish faiths too. Andrew:Oxford
  • Score: 7

10:17pm Sat 16 Aug 14

smartie03 says...

I would think churches and religious groups might have some more important things to prey for with everything going in in the world at moment.

What selfish morons these people are. Give another community an opportunity. It takes 3 minutes on a bike from temple cowley to BBL!!!

You're wasting my taxes with your persistent attempts to delay.

As for religious organisations pandering to these nut jobs, prey for people dying and suffering in this world, prey for peace. Makes me & numerous other members of the local community very angry!

If there was a god, he'd be ashamed!
I would think churches and religious groups might have some more important things to prey for with everything going in in the world at moment. What selfish morons these people are. Give another community an opportunity. It takes 3 minutes on a bike from temple cowley to BBL!!! You're wasting my taxes with your persistent attempts to delay. As for religious organisations pandering to these nut jobs, prey for people dying and suffering in this world, prey for peace. Makes me & numerous other members of the local community very angry! If there was a god, he'd be ashamed! smartie03
  • Score: 3

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