A NEW swimming pool, cafe and business hub has opened in an effort to promote health and wellbeing.

The Fish Tank family centre at Aycliffe Business Park, in Newton Aycliffe, launched on Sunday, thanks to Newton Aycliffe homeowners and entrepreneurs Penny and Paul Gordon.

The couple have three daughters with another child on the way and are passionate about fitness and wellbeing in children and families.

They previously ran a swimming tuition business for babies using pools across the region.

The pair had the idea to run their own swimming pool and family centre with the dream of it being ‘more spa than leisure centre’.

Mrs Gordon said: “We’d encourage people and families to come along as we don’t think there’s anything like this in the area.

“After almost nine months of construction and many more months – in fact years in the planning and design stages, our dream has finally been realised. We’re looking forward to seeing our vision come to life with lots of classes, activities and most importantly, families.”

The leisure facility is complete with office space, a function room, a cafe and hydrotherapy pool.

Mr Gordon – who is qualified as an engineer – said the building is purpose built and decisions have been made to make the building suitable for all users.

He said: "Everything you see in here has been really thought out. We came up with the idea to build the centre four years ago so it's surreal now to see it running.

"The centre has received a really good reaction from the people of Newton Aycliffe. We saw hundreds of people walk through the doors yesterday and in the future we will use the venue for parties and other activities."

The operation is run from a 56 square metre office alongside a coffee shop – designed to be baby friendly.

Members of the community can enjoy swimming lessons in the pool and the development has two activity rooms to be hired out to baby, toddler and parent focused activity groups for a wide variety of activities which they can pre-book.

The business founders said the launch surpassed their expectations and have plans to roll out centres across the UK in the future.

The pair are currently looking at sites in Gilesgate, Durham.

For more information call 01325-965965 or email enquiries@thefishtank.com