Alongside outstanding rugby and soccer pitches at Osborne, Cranmore and Bladon and a state of the art water-based hockey pitch at Shaw’s Bridge, RBAI boasts the best cricket facilities of any school in Ireland.
Having produced 3 Olympians and 6 pupils who have competed in the Commonwealth Games, swimming remains extremely popular with more than 650 pupils participating each year leading to over 12,500 individual usages for Physical Education and Games.
The current pool also hosts waterpolo, rowing, competition swimming and utilisation by the local community.
Having served pupils for more than 50 years, the RBAI swimming pool is now beyond its economic life. As external provision of swimming pool time is severely limited in the Belfast area, the loss of our pool would have a profound impact. The swimming pool also forms a crucial part of the School’s community outreach strategy, and is used throughout the year by a wide range of groups.
Following careful appraisal of a range of options, the Board of Governors plans to build a new six lane pool facilitating ‘learn to swim’ classes, competitive swimming, waterpolo and related activities such as sub aqua and canoeing lessons.
Built with energy efficient materials and a moveable floor, the new pool will provide a state of the art facility in the heart of the School.
The proposed plans will give RBAI the best school swimming pool in Northern Ireland, enhancing the School by:
Providing a contemporary facility which will benefit 8000 pupils over the next 50 years.
Maintaining RBAI as the premier school for competitive swimming in Northern Ireland.
Providing another asset which will attract new pupils to the School.
Supporting RBAI’s community engagement strategy.
In recent years RBAI has nurtured a number of leading swimmers, including James Brown, who has been selected to represent Northern Ireland at the 2018 Commonwealth Games in Australia. James won the Bath Cup and Otter Medley Cup in 2015 alongside Morgan Berryman (Ulster Junior 1500m record holder) and Cai Armstrong (NI High Performance Squad).
Current pupil Jack McMillan won a Bronze medal at the Youth Commonwealth games in the Bahamas during 2017, after swimming the fastest time ever recorded at the Bath cup during the School’s recent victory.