THE final death knell has sounded for Droitwich Lido after councillors voted to send in the bulldozers.

Following years of battling by campaign group SALT - Save a Lido Today - to reopen the derelict pool, the final nail in its coffin was hammered in last night at a meeting of Wychavon District Council.

Speaking after the meeting, SALT chairman Linda Watkins said she was "very disappointed" by the decision and was going home to consider how it would be possible to save the Lido.

"It's been a long battle with Wychavon," she said. "People are so disappointed."

Dozens of people crammed into the council chamber at the Civic Centre in Pershore in support of the Lido.

But despite their presence and a petition containing thousands of names, councillors voted 28 to 12 to demolish the Lido - with two abstentions - and incorporate the site into the rest of the park.

Water feature

The emphasis will now be on the Lido's replacement, which it has said could be a water play feature for children, costing up to £150,000.

The council hopes to have proposals on the table by the end of March.

During the meeting, a suggestion was put forward for the council to adjourn its decision and look into how much money, if any, it would be prepared to plough into the Lido and then come up with a suitable scheme around that figure.

But the proposal was shot down by Conservative councillors who said a decision needed to be taken there and then as it was "unfair to keep the public hanging on".

Liberal Democrat and Labour councillors gave impassioned final pleas to their colleagues to give the Lido one last chance.

"This is what the people of Droitwich want," said Liberal Democrat leader Coun Margaret Rowley. "How can they make it any more plain? You are just not listening."

n In Friday's Droitwich Focus read a special feature on the Lido from the day it was built to the present time.