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Vending machine - Forest Hill swimming pool
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Posts: 5
Joined: Aug 2010
Post: #1
01-03-2014 09:58 AM

Yesterday i went to the wonderful forest hill swimming pool for my daughter's swimming lesson. We arrived as normal a bit early, settled down on the sofas for her to play in the brilliant play area. I was shocked and annoyed to be greeted by a monstrosity of a chocolate vending machine right next to the play area. Apparently the cafe had requested it be moved down from upstairs.

I can only assume this was a cynical ploy to increase sales by getting children to pester parents into buying chocolate.

I complained to both the desk and cafe but was greeted with indifference from the desk as it was not their responsibility and rudeness from the staff at the cafe.

I have two issues with the location:
it is going to get broken. But really that is not my problem. And I almost want it to get broken.

Secondly and most importantly, the swimming pool and centre is all about encouraging fitness and promoting a health lifestyle in all generations. For younger generations the pool should be about helping them learn the right skills to make the right life decisions for the rest of their life, along with guidance from parents and others. Why then put a chocolate machine right next to the toy area? What message does that send? Now children will associate the swimming pool with chocolate not health.

If the cafe wants to make money then it should focus on different mechanisms.

Any thoughts on what else i can do to raise concerns?

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Posts: 21
Joined: May 2012
Post: #2
01-03-2014 10:20 AM

That's awful, have never been in that area but would now avoid it, who wants to be pestered for chocolate when having a healthy family swim?

I wonder, if the Pools are reading this, if they would consider a) relocating and b) a healthier alternative - at Deptford they have a Healthy Vending Company machine which is a much better idea for a council run swimming pool.

Really they should be doing better at that with all the obesity and eating well campaigns various LAs are running.

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Posts: 42
Joined: Sep 2010
Post: #3
01-03-2014 10:33 AM

I agree. I noticed it yesterday, as did my 3 year old son. It's ridiculous having a vending machine in the children's play area and is sending out a really negative message re healthy eating. Surely, if this is considered necessary by Forest Hill Pools, then it could be moved somewhere less prominent and could have healthy snacks rather than chocolate and crisps. Some feedback would be good as they do monitor these boards.

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Posts: 459
Joined: Dec 2010
Post: #4
02-03-2014 12:43 AM

I noticed it yesterday also and actually let out a snort of laughter as its filled with crisps and similar such **** which is totally at odds with all the posters around promoting health and fitness as one of the benefits of attending the gym.

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Posts: 81
Joined: Sep 2013
Post: #5
02-03-2014 12:59 PM

Don't buy anything from it.

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Posts: 221
Joined: Jan 2007
Post: #6
03-03-2014 10:15 PM

Totally agree! We were there at the weekend, my son went to the play area, and straight away saw the vending machine and then pestered me for a chocolate bar. I didn't give in of course - but the point is he wouldn't have wanted it if the vending machine hadn't been right there. I am not completely anti-chocolate, we all deserve a treat now and then, but to have a junk food vending machine in a health centre next to a children's play area is totally ridiculous.

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Posts: 459
Joined: Dec 2010
Post: #7
03-03-2014 11:43 PM

And let us not forget that if we do fancy a sweet treat we have an excellent old style sweet shop opposite in the form of Sugar Mountain.

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Posts: 64
Joined: Jun 2007
Post: #8
10-03-2014 08:35 PM

I kind of agree, but the best answer is a flat 'no' to children asking for chocolate, They need to learn that just because they see something, doesn't mean they can have it.

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Posts: 3
Joined: Jul 2013
Post: #9
14-03-2014 03:43 PM

Crazyhorse - I discovered the same thing myself yesterday and was gutted! My daughter loves that little play area so much (shamefully we sometimes go in just to use it for a few minutes!) and now its just a squashed section that none of the children can access. I had a long convo with the manager when she took over recently about how brilliant that little corner was....and now this. You have inspired me to write an angry letter to her. Lets try and get it moved back.

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