Mum-of-two alerted to 'flies running up walls' by her child screaming in NI leisure centre changing area

A mum-of-two says she was “absolutely disgusted” after seeing flies or ants running up the walls in the changing area of a Northern Ireland swimming pool on Monday.

Wednesday, 6th November 2019, 5:38 pm
The local council has apologised for any distress caused.

The woman said she was alerted by the screams of her six-year-old son who was upset by the incident at Cookstown swimming pool.

She claimed the insects were running up from a drain and crawling over the walls at the side of the changing area.

“The hygiene standards have gone so downhill in the pool. It’s disgusting, that shouldn’t be in a council run building, it’s a busy place,” 
she said.

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The woman, who asked not to be named, said she was paying £140 to £150 every ten weeks for swimming lessons and it was totally unacceptable for people to put up with such standards.

She said she complained to an attendant about the insects and was told “that happens at this time of the year”.

“Well it’s not something you would expect to see anywhere at any time of the year,” she continued. “Several other parents saw it as well.”

She said there was always a smell of urine in the changing area and some times it was on the floor.

“My boys are in their bare feet and I have to lift them over it,” she went on.”I wouldn’t let them take a shower.”

The woman pointed out that she complained to staff about the hygiene standards every week.

But the insects on Monday was the last straw and she wants the council to clean up its act.

“We are paying big money and the swimming lessons between 3.30 and 6.30 are attended by large numbers of people,” she had.

A spokesperson for Mid Ulster District Council said the leisure centre has experienced some issues with drain fly.

“While unsightly, the insects are totally harmless, do not bite and there is no public health risk associated with them,” she said.

“We are working to address the issue and apologise for any upset caused to our customers.”