Queenstown Swimming Complex, opened in 15 August 1970, was the first swimming pool built in a neighbourhood estate. This swimming complex aims to provide first rate sports facilities to the residents and nurture the water polo team for Singapore in the 1970s. The opening is another milestone in the progress of public housing in Singapore which marks the progress from merely providing a roof over one's head to that of providing amenities for a healthier and more gracious living.
Queenstown Swimming Complex in the 1970s
Located at Stirling Road, this swimming pool is usually crowded on weekends and in the evenings. (It's rather quiet later in the night). There are three pools here, namely a waddling pool for toddlers, a 25m diving pool and a training pool that is 1.5 metres deep. Life guards are stationed around the pools.
In 1971, the water polo training centre was established in the Queenstown swimming complex. It was a move from the Singapore Amateur Swimming Association to open doors for scrawny neighbourhood kids from humble background to tap and unlock their potential.
Residents having fun at the pool (1972)
Queenstown residents who visited the swimming pool during evenings would have noticed the buzz at the 25m square pool with scores of tanned boys passing ball, doing push ups, throw medicine balls or sprinting across the pool. They were the water polo team who rose to international limelight at the Southeast Asian games being the undisputed king of water polo. Celebrating consistent and unrivaled success achieving 22 gold medals at the South East Asian games, the vivacious water polo tea is inarguably the pride of Queenstown. Unlike other sports, the water polo team does not have a household name or figure. It is a pity that their continuous success was not mentioned more frequently.
The national water polo team was formed by Kenneth Kee in 1971 featuring many Queenstown residents. Some of them even used the murky waters of Alexandra Canal to practise their swimming prior to the opening of the swimming complex. Many of them came from humble backgrounds, and instead of commiserating the point, the water polo team capitalised on their mutual predicament as a rallying point. They accepted tough training and was willing to "fight" all the way in all the competitions.
The Water Polo Team-Born and Bred in Queenstown
What scintillates and sparkles in the past may have lost some its glamour through the trying times of age and wear. The swimming pool, once a spectacular landscape in the 1970s and 1980s, appeared rundown after years of neglect. While residents remember of her glory days, attendance at the pool has fallen tremendously as it can no longer match up with other swimming complexes in Sengkang and Jurong East.
The same flight of stairs leading visitors to the pool
The familiar sight of the competitive pool
Despite the infrastructure oversight, the pool remains an important source of recreation for many residents and visitors to the pool. Underwater hockey, water polo training and other water-based sports do hold their practices at the swimming pool
Underwater hockey practices
The swimming pool continues to gleam and dazzle in the night sky. Memories are made of this...
Queenstown Swimming Pool at night
Discuss your memories of Queenstown Swimming Complex at our facebook now!