Crook Log leisure centre duping customers with 'free' swim offer, says user

Allison Owen is not happy with Crook Log's new deal.

Allison Owen is not happy with Crook Log's new deal.

First published in News
Last updated
News Shopper: Photograph of the Author by , reporter

A Bexleyheath leisure centre user claims customers are being duped into paying for swimming sessions which are supposed to free.

Allison Owen, 48, takes her six-year-old daughter Isabella to Crook Log leisure centre for swimming lessons every Monday.

With a £20 saver card, she shells out a total of £280 a year for the Aquazone programme by paying in instalments at reception every eight to 10 weeks.

The centre in Brampton Road is currently advertising a new deal where you can pay £27.50 a month for once-a-week lessons by direct debit, which works out at £330 a year.

The scheme trumpets the claim children get free public swimming sessions as part of the deal when in reality ‘free’ means an extra £50 every 12 months.

Mrs Owen, who lives in Normanhurst Avenue, Bexleyheath, told News Shopper: "You don’t use the word free if something costs you more and it’s there in block capitals.

"There’s nothing free about it. To me the word free means it doesn’t cost you any more than it would have cost you when it fact it does.

News Shopper:

The letter advertising the offer. 

"People are just trusting in that word because it’s there."

The legal secretary objects to a letter about the new deal sent out to parents in which ‘free’ is stressed in block capitals.

The mother-of-four said: "It probably sounds a bit trivial but the thing is in this day and age people don’t have the money.

"If you have two children that’s an extra £100 a year – that could be the difference between them having school shoes and not having proper school shoes."

Parkwood Leisure run Crook Log, along with Bexley’s two other leisure centres in Erith and Sidcup.

South east assistant regional director Jason Stanton, said: "The scheme was introduced as an easy payment option to remove customers having to pay for block swimming lessons upfront.

"Customers who purchase swimming lessons on a direct debit will now receive a free saver card, which entitles them to cheaper activities across the three centres.

"While this has not been advertised on the promotional material it is made clear to customers at the point of sale by the receptionists.

"The saver card offsets the price differential within the two payment options, which means the customers have the option of which payment suits their needs best."

Comments (6)

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9:06pm Tue 29 Jul 14

Lady Boy Erastusia says...

Toni ainge is the deputy director for leisure and you should complain to her. Failing that go one step up and report it to the director.... Peter ellershaw.... Husband of toni ainge. Needless to say your words may fall on deaf ears. That's rich..... Yes and they are. Combined over £250000 in wages if the councils accounts are correct. And struggling families must struggle on
Toni ainge is the deputy director for leisure and you should complain to her. Failing that go one step up and report it to the director.... Peter ellershaw.... Husband of toni ainge. Needless to say your words may fall on deaf ears. That's rich..... Yes and they are. Combined over £250000 in wages if the councils accounts are correct. And struggling families must struggle on Lady Boy Erastusia
  • Score: 12

8:00am Wed 30 Jul 14

HearTheFacts says...

It's Bexley Council by a different name. So the CONSeratives control it all!. £40 million to find. Blame the idiots that voted CON.
It's Bexley Council by a different name. So the CONSeratives control it all!. £40 million to find. Blame the idiots that voted CON. HearTheFacts
  • Score: -6

9:17am Wed 30 Jul 14

concerned.erith says...

perhaps the 'legal secretary' needs to read this letter better regardin the FREE items.

FREE swiming hat - good thing for pool hygiene
FREE swim in public sessoins - in addition to the lesons being paid for
FREE swim bag - good place for wet items
FREE family swim voucher - get you in the pool with your kids

Gobledegook from Parkwood though.
perhaps the 'legal secretary' needs to read this letter better regardin the FREE items. FREE swiming hat - good thing for pool hygiene FREE swim in public sessoins - in addition to the lesons being paid for FREE swim bag - good place for wet items FREE family swim voucher - get you in the pool with your kids Gobledegook from Parkwood though. concerned.erith
  • Score: 7

2:47pm Wed 30 Jul 14

Marty1979 says...

concerned.erith wrote:
perhaps the 'legal secretary' needs to read this letter better regardin the FREE items.

FREE swiming hat - good thing for pool hygiene
FREE swim in public sessoins - in addition to the lesons being paid for
FREE swim bag - good place for wet items
FREE family swim voucher - get you in the pool with your kids

Gobledegook from Parkwood though.
I can't see what she thinks she should be getting for free. It doesn't say anywhere that lessons are free
[quote][p][bold]concerned.erith[/bold] wrote: perhaps the 'legal secretary' needs to read this letter better regardin the FREE items. FREE swiming hat - good thing for pool hygiene FREE swim in public sessoins - in addition to the lesons being paid for FREE swim bag - good place for wet items FREE family swim voucher - get you in the pool with your kids Gobledegook from Parkwood though.[/p][/quote]I can't see what she thinks she should be getting for free. It doesn't say anywhere that lessons are free Marty1979
  • Score: 2

5:03pm Wed 30 Jul 14

Outandabout says...

The pool at Erith is no better. It is advertised as 'open' on the web page but isn't. Classes occupy a small part of the pool and everyone else is put in the deep end. the floor rises making it a shallow end. A wall comes up and you are in a small pool with 40 people expecting to be able to swim. They advertise that as a 'general swim' but you can't do anything.

One class means three quarters of the pool are not in use and the class only uses a fraction. Everyone else is crammed into the new shallow end.
The pool at Erith is no better. It is advertised as 'open' on the web page but isn't. Classes occupy a small part of the pool and everyone else is put in the deep end. the floor rises making it a shallow end. A wall comes up and you are in a small pool with 40 people expecting to be able to swim. They advertise that as a 'general swim' but you can't do anything. One class means three quarters of the pool are not in use and the class only uses a fraction. Everyone else is crammed into the new shallow end. Outandabout
  • Score: -2

2:34pm Thu 31 Jul 14

Gypo.Joe says...

This is why I have me own pool boi. All them council tenant types, sweaty bodies, personal hygiene leaves a lot to be desired. Plus they pee in the pool ya know.
This is why I have me own pool boi. All them council tenant types, sweaty bodies, personal hygiene leaves a lot to be desired. Plus they pee in the pool ya know. Gypo.Joe
  • Score: 0

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