The Flamingo Swimming Pool was brought to reality by a massive community effort to raise £100,000. In 1989 a steering committee was formed to look at the viability of building the 25m pool. East Devon District council pledged £500,000 after which applications were made to the lottery sports council.
It was looking as though the Axe Valley dream was coming to fruition when funding from the lottery was approved for the project including the country’s first hydrotherapy pool available to the public. But then the Lottery reversed its decision withdrawing the money.
Residents came out in force to protest against the decision with support from the Town Council, District and County Council and East Devon MP Sir Peter Emery. A revised application was submitted to the Sports Council and an award of £1,440,240 was granted – higher than its original lottery grant.