We want everyone to be able to enjoy the pools and have a safe and enjoyable experience.

Mum and toddler in the pool

It’s important that caregivers take extra care when accompanying a child to the pool.

Tips for parents and caregivers

  • Allow food to settle before swimming.
  • Make sure your child has been to the toilet before they enter the pool.
  • If your child is aged 7 or under, grab a wristband on your way into the pool:
    • 5 to 7-year-olds wear a purple wristband.
    • Parents of under 5s wear an orange wristband.
  • Remind your child that it’s okay to leave a swimming lesson to go to the toilet - they just need to let their tutor know.
  • If your child wants to go for a leisure swim before or after their swimming lesson make sure they have a wristband.
  • Check swimming nappies regularly.
  • If you are at our outdoor pools, make sure you wear sun protection.
  • Stay hydrated.
  • Do not let your child swim if they have had diarrhoea in the last two weeks.
  • If your child is under 12 years old - from 16 January 2023 they will need to be with a responsible caregiver aged 16 or older at our facilities, unless they are attending a supervised event or activity, for example, a Swimsmart lesson or club event.

Supervision at our pools

It is important that children get the appropriate level of supervision when they visit the pool. 

  • Children between the ages of zero to four must be supervised by a responsible caregiver aged 16 or older who is also in the water. The caregiver must be within arms reach of the child at all times.
  • Children between five and seven years old need active supervision. This means you are watching the child you are responsible for, you are able to hear them, they can hear you at all times and you are able to provide immediate assistance if needed.

Using our wristbands

From 6 December 2022, children and their caregivers will be issued wristbands when visiting Christchurch City Council pools to help lifeguards identify young children and work with their caregivers to ensure they are being appropriately supervised.

Wristbands are given out at the front desk when you pay to enter the pool:

  • Parents or caregivers who are supervising children under the age of five will be given orange coloured wristbands.
  • Children aged five to seven years old will be given purple coloured wristbands.

  • We know that children can get into trouble faster than adults and we need to work as a team to help them quicker if that happens.
  • If you are a member or have a multi-visit card you can collect a wristband from the stand on the way into the pool. If you forget, our lifeguards will have them on hand.
  • Please return them to the stand after your visit so they can be reused.

Supervision at our centres

  • From Monday 16 January 2023, children under 12 years old will need to be accompanied by a responsible caregiver 16 years or older at our facilities unless the child is attending a supervised programme or activity such as a club event or Swimsmart lessons.
  • Caregivers will need to accompany children in the changing rooms and other areas of the facility. Parents and caregivers will be responsible for the child, will determine the correct area of the pool for the child to be in and provide the correct level of supervision for their age. We also expect the parent or caregiver to be available if our staff need to manage bad behaviour.
  • The minimum age remains 16 to use our fitness centres and 14 to participate in group fitness classes.
  • We understand that this may change the way that children and caregivers access our facilities so we wanted to build flexibility into the rule change so customers can get used to our new approach.
  • Read more about our rules of use(external link)

When water does not meet the required quality standard the pool must be cleared of swimmers to be treated and cleaned. Cleaning times vary depending on the pool:

  Lane pool    Leisure pool Spa pool      Toddler pool Teach /
Learn pool
Sport pool    Hydro-
therapy pool
Pioneer 7 hrs
30 mins
7 hrs
55 mins
1 hr   5 hrs    
Graham Condon 8 hrs
45 mins
  1 hr
35 mins
1 hr
25 mins
4 hrs 
25 mins
Jellie Park   7 hrs
30 mins
1 hr
20 mins
1 hr
20 mins
3 hrs
20 mins
12 hrs
20 mins
Taiora QEII 9 hrs
2 hrs
30 mins
40 mins 1 hr 3 hrs   3 hrs
Te Pou Toetoe: Linwood Pool 9 hrs   45 mins 45 mins 2 hrs 15 mins    
Te Hāpua: Halswell 12 hrs
20 mins
    1 hr      
Norman Kirk Memorial Summer Pool 15 hrs     6 hrs      
Waltham 12 hrs
40 mins
    1 hr
30 mins

All Council pools comply with the New Zealand Pool Water Quality Standard NZS 5826:2010.

The purpose of this standard is to protect public health by ensuring a minimum standard is met at all times in regard to water quality.

The standard sets out the margins in which water is safe for public swimming and the required frequency of pool testing. The Council adheres to these standards at all times.

On occasions when these standards aren’t met through water testing, a temporary pool closure takes place until the water quality is returned to within range of the standard.

The reasons for not meeting the standard can vary, in general, it is caused by a human faecal or vomit incident or on occasion a plant maintenance issue.

Graham Condon, Jellie Park, Pioneer, Taiora QEII, Te Pou Toetoe: Linwood Pool, Te Hāpua: Halswell and Waltham Pool are also Poolsafe accredited(external link) – an accreditation run by the New Zealand Recreation Association.

Templeton, Norman Kirk Memorial Pool, and all Council paddling pools are Quality Pools(external link). These accreditations are run by the New Zealand Recreation Association.

In order to be pool safe, these pools must go through a full audit every year. This audit encompasses the whole pool operation, including but not limited to water testing records, health and safety procedures and staff training.