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UEA economist Dr Mike Brock completes swimming challenge to raise money for Beccles Lido

PUBLISHED: 15:11 15 August 2017 | UPDATED: 15:17 15 August 2017

Dr Mike Brock, an economics lecturer at the UEA swam over 5km in Beccles Lido to raise money to help towards the replacement toilet block at the pool. Picture: Sonya Duncan.

Dr Mike Brock, an economics lecturer at the UEA swam over 5km in Beccles Lido to raise money to help towards the replacement toilet block at the pool. Picture: Sonya Duncan.

ARCHANT EASTERN DAILY PRESS (01603) 772434

A UEA economist completed a gruelling swimming challenge to raise money for a community-run outdoor pool.

Dr Mike Brock presents £550 to Beccles Lido LTD directors, Maureen Saunders and Suzanne Gibbons. Byline: Sonya Duncan. Dr Mike Brock presents £550 to Beccles Lido LTD directors, Maureen Saunders and Suzanne Gibbons. Byline: Sonya Duncan.

Dr Mike Brock swam non-stop for two hours at Beccles Lido, in Puddingmoor, on Monday, August 14.

The 28-year-old completed 174 lengths of the pool covering approximately 5.8km and raising £550 in the process.

Mr Brock was inspired to fundraise for the lido after visiting for an appearance on a special edition of BBC Breakfast in May.

He said: “I think it’s great to have the community running this kind of amenity for the people of Beccles.

The current toilet block at Beccles Lido. Byline: Sonya Duncan. The current toilet block at Beccles Lido. Byline: Sonya Duncan.

“It’s nice to know that you are doing something for the people of a local community and what you’re doing is appreciated.”

The lecturer also held a bake sale of homemade cakes at the university as part of his fundraising efforts.

He said: “The amount of people in Norwich who knew about the lido was amazing - people really wanted to support it.”

Money raised will be going towards redeveloping the toilet facilities at the pool.

Dr Mike Brock swam 174 lengths of the pool at Beccles Lido.  Byline: Sonya Duncan. Dr Mike Brock swam 174 lengths of the pool at Beccles Lido. Byline: Sonya Duncan.

The portacabin toilet facilities currently in use were installed on the site under temporary planning permission in 1995.

According to Suzanne Gibbons, one of the lido’s directors, they are simply “no longer fit for use.”

She said: “They were on site when we took over from Waveney District Council in 2009.

“However, we are seeing three to four times more people use the lido than the council ever did. We had 46,000 visitors last year.”

A selection of cakes baked by Mr Brock that were sold to raise money for Beccles Lido. Picture: Mike Brock. A selection of cakes baked by Mr Brock that were sold to raise money for Beccles Lido. Picture: Mike Brock.

Replacing the portacabins with a modular toilet and shower block complete with disabled facilities will cost approximately £110,000.

Beccles Lido set a challenge to raise the first £10,000 from the local community by October. Including Mr Brock’s efforts, they have currently raised over £7,000.

“We are always so pleased with how the town responds,” said Mrs Gibbons

Redevelopment is expected to take place between September and May when the pool is closed.

You can help the lido to achieve its goal by donating online at uk.virginmoneygiving.com/team/BecclesLidoTBC.

Alternatively personal donations can be made at the lido or by post to 6 Cromwell Close, Beccles, NR34 9XE.

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