The Milestone School is one of the largest special schools in the Country. It was formed in 1997 on its present site in Longford Lane, Gloucester, by an amalgamation of three former schools: Longford School, The Hawthorns and Chamwell School. Prior to that time, all the children with physical disability attended Chamwell School and it was for them that the hydrotherapy pool was built in 1976 making it now 40 years old.
The original pool was one of the largest hydrotherapy pools of its time and was paid for by the generosity of local benefactors and grants from organisations such as Lords Taverners. Many people will remember its opening by the actor, the late Richard Herne, otherwise known as the children’s television character Mr Pastry. Local organisations, such as The Lions Club, Rotary Club, The Barnwood Trust and many others contributed and Dowty’s provided the pool’s hoisting equipment, which still bears their name.
Sadly, forty years on from its opening, the pool is in a sorry state of repair, the roof, plumbing and changing rooms need replacement and much of its equipment is outdated.
The Chamwell Centre Charity was formed in 2015, with the primary aim of replacing the hydrotherapy pool. This has now extended to the present visionary all ability sports and therapy facility, which will be accessible to all in Gloucestershire.