The prospect of a new swimming pool for Waddon may become a reality if council plans get the go ahead.

Plans to expand the new leisure and community centre in Waddon so that it includes a swimming pool have come to light since the decision to merge Waddon Infant and Duppas Junior Schools into one new community school on the Duppas site got the green light.

The Croydon Guardian reported last month plans to amalgamate the Violent Lane and Purley Way schools a move that came after a committee from both schools spent 18 months discussing the possibility of a merger.

Waddon Infant School would close once construction work for the new school is completed around September 2008, providing a second site for the expansion of the leisure and community centre and a potential new pool.

"I think the community is quite rightly saying what's going to replace the school on the Waddon site. The timing is perfect to continue the transformation scheme, these opportunities don't come along that often," said Waddon ward councillor Paul Smith.

Construction work at Waddon's new community centre on the derelict Propeller pub site and Waylands centre in Purley Way got underway in early March.

The centre which is due to open next autumn will include leisure, community, disability and learning facilities as well as 116 apartments.

However, the site did not have the space to bring a swimming pool back to Purley Way after the open-air pool closed in 1979.

Coun Smith said: "Bringing a public pool back to Waddon and Purley Way has been for many people a dream and it is now a dream that we believe we can make come true."

The council estimates that the pool will cost approximately £5million half of which may be paid for by the sale of land at the Propeller site to housing developers.

A £500,000 planning windfall from a supermarket on the site and a further £2 million from the council's capital budget would make up the rest of the costs.

Coun Smith said: "We know that it is what local people want. All too often when we look at developments the timing doesn't work but here we have an opportunity.

"We know that over the years of talking to people everyone recognises that there used to be a pool in Waddon and it would be something that is beneficial to Waddon."