Looking back... ‘Ratepayers should be able to use Valley facilities at all times’

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Swimmers from throughout the region were having to do without the use of the Valley Leisure Centre pool in March 1980.

The pool was closed for a number of weeks to allow for annual maintenance to take place.

It was not scheduled to open again for at least another two weeks at the time of going to print.

All other leisure centre activities were suspended during the Northern Ireland Motorcycle Show, which ran for a week in the sports hall at the centre.

Cllr Bob Kidd had repeatedly attacked the council over the issue, saying that ratepayers had been deprived of the centre in order to hold special events.

He claimed that the residents of the borough had a right to use the facilities at the Church Road site at all times.

Meanwhile, water supplies had been cut off for a number of homes in the region that same week.

Workers in the area struck a water pipe, causing it to burst, while they were drilling.

Prompt action by the Water Service resulted in the water supplies being returned to normal a number of hours later.