Broadcasting Tom Daley’s diving show live from Luton is inspiring locals to learn to dive, council leader Hazel Simmonds said on Monday.
The ITV1 show was initially mocked by critics and some viewers, but still attracted 5.34million viewers during the second episode on Saturday, only slightly down from 5.6million in the first week.
Celebrities including Joey Essex, model Caprice and former ski jumper Eddie “The Eagle” Edwards were live in Luton for heat two of the competition, making full use of the Olympic-sized pool as they showed off their new skills.
Councillor Hazel Simmons said: “Over the past fortnight we have seen an increase in the number of people expressing an interest in diving, with more than 200 people signing up to our learn to dive courses and we also have people on a waiting list.”
Councillor Simmons said income from Splash will be used to purchase portable springboards to increase diving capacity by a further 25 per cent.
“Overall it’s fantastic news, as the TV programme is showcasing the fantastic facilities we have to offer at Inspire and this is helping us to achieve our goal to increase participation in sport and physical activity in our communities.”
When asked on our Facebook site if the show had inspired them to try diving, Luton resident Nicola Nelson said: “Yes my children already swim there doing their lessons. They both said Saturday night they would like to do it!! Show isn’t fantastic though, that is down to ITV though not where its filmed.”
Mathew Price said: “Yeah, diving behind the sofa when I hear the opening credits”, and Roger Fensome said: “Yes, diving for the off button!”
Readers including Chris Lennon, Heidi Preston and Kay Webb simply said: “No.”
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