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Former Olympic swimmer Duncan Goodhew gave youngsters a coaching session to mark the refurbishment of their pool.
The pool, at Chester-le-Street Leisure Centre, is now more energy efficient after British Gas upgraded the building’s heating and lighting.
Duncan, 56, whose son is studying at Northumbria University, said: “Modernised heating and ventilation means the pool here in Chester-le-Street is a nicer place for users and the council has a smaller energy bill, so everyone’s a winner.
“I hope people in the area will take advantage of what’s been done by making use of the pool.”
Duncan, who won Olympic gold in 1980, added: “I run a number of coaching projects aimed at getting youngsters into swimming.
“There are also a number of companies, such as British Gas, who ask me to help with their swimming-related projects.
“In some ways I’m more involved in swimming now than when I won the gold medal.