LAST WEEK saw a huge blow to the college sport calendar after the swimming gala had to be cancelled for the second successive year. The AU announced the decision on the same day as the event was due to go ahead at Next Generation gym. It is a massive disappointment made worse by the fact that last year the event was also called off at the last minute due to the closing of the Barbican centre in York city centre.
The cancellation seems to have been due to a lack of communication between AU representatives and Next Generation staff leading up to the event. Nik Engineer, AU Vice President, said the problem was due to a “misunderstanding between Next Generation and Stuart Leslie regarding the date and number of lanes required for the event”. Engineer said that he went down to Next Generation on the Thursday before the event to try and solve the problem, but it became apparent that the gala wouldn’t be going ahead this term. Having made contact with the Next Generation manager Engineer was hopeful that he would be able to talk with him again and oversee organisation of the event in the summer.
Engineer cited “poor communication” between staff at Next Generation itself as not helping the situation. He also stated that it was not the first time that the AU had encountered organisational problems in dealing with Next Generation. However he went on to stress his confidence that the event was likely to go ahead in the summer term instead at the same venue, which is necessary because it is the only place in York which has the required changing facilities. “The event will get a great club involved with college sport and so it is important that it goes ahead at some stage,” added Engineer.