Refurbished Berg Street swimming pool dedicated to young ones

2015-12-23 09:36
Ready for summer, newly appointed lifeguard at the Berg Street swimming pool, Phillip Radebe.

Ready for summer, newly appointed lifeguard at the Berg Street swimming pool, Phillip Radebe. (The Witness)

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Pietermaritzburg - The historic Berg Street swimming pool was officially opened by the man who was instrumental in building of the pool 50 years ago.

Haniff Bhamjee said he was absolutely delighted to see the revamped pool reopened to the public — a vision he had when was only a teenager in the Indian Youth League.

“In 1961 when three brothers drowned in the Dorpspruit river, we knew we needed a proper swimming facility. We organised a petition that more than 3 000 children signed and handed over to the council. I remember calling every week to find out when our pool would be ready,” said Bhamjee.

Bhamjee, now living in Wales, said the pool finally opened in 1965 and stands as an icon of the struggle.

“Although there were many problems and allegations in the media surrounding this pool, that was the past and now the pool is here for everyone,” he added.

In an intimate gathering at the Berg Street swimming pool yesterday, Msunduzi mayor Chris Ndlela, uMgu­ngundlovu District mayor Yusuf Bhamjee and other members of the council cut the ribbon to the newly revamped swimming pool.

Ndlela said that he was also happy to see the pool in the condition it is in now and dedicated the pool to the youth. “To the young ones, this is for you. And with the recent heatwaves we are experiencing, this pool will serve as a great relief,” said Ndlela.

• kailene.pillay@witness.co.za

Read more on:    pietermaritzburg

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