Sheffield swimmer wants to see city park turned into a 'public asset'

A Sheffield man wants the lake at Crookes Valley Park to be invested in and transformed into a ‘public asset’ for the city.

Wednesday, 1st September 2021, 3:32 pm
Updated Wednesday, 1st September 2021, 3:32 pm
The lake at Crookes Valley Park

Broomhill resident David Allen believes Sheffield Council has not done enough to make the park lake safer or to deter swimmers from using the lake as it is.

A man in his 20s tragically drowned in the lake at Crookes Valley Park on July 19, prompting calls for people not to swim there.

The council also stated that they would add more signage to the area highlighting the dangers of swimming in the lake.

New signage shows highlights the danger of swimming in Crookes Valley lake.

But David said the lake could become a water-based facility for recreation, especially as more people are now interested in swimming outdoors. Last week it was also confirmed that Ponds Forge pool in the city centre will not reopen until 2022 as refurbishments take place.

David said: “Crookes Valley Lake was constructed in 1785 to provide the good people of Sheffield with water. There seems little consensus on how deep the water is with Coun Alison Teal of Sheffield Council recently stating 30 feet whilst most previous estimates put it around 60 feet

“The present situation at Crookes Valley Park is unacceptable and the council needs to know the people are aware of this.

"Local government have tacitly known swimming takes place in Crookes Valley for years and have chosen a laissez-faire approach which remains until this day.

David Allen thinks Crookes Valley Park should become a public asset with more safety features.

"A few new signs do not cut the mustard and in my opinion constitute a total abdication of their responsibility regarding public safety and well-being.

“This lake with the right limited investment could be transformed into an asset for the people. Lifeguards would need to be present at dedicated times, some of them could be voluntary.“This initiative could be headed up by the council alone or in conjunction with the very prosperous universities in the city.

"These establishments benefit from the goodwill of the Sheffield people and the city’s infrastructure, perhaps it’s time to put something back.

“I am sure that with will and determination we could be ahead of the curve in creating a water-based facility at Crookes Valley.”

People continued to swim in Crookes Valley lake following the tragic drowning death last month.

Sheffield Council was approached for comment and did not respond.