The Dolphin Centre is set to dive back in time as it goes back to the 80s to celebrate 35 years.

A full programme of family fun and entertainment is planned for the weekend, Saturday 4 & Sunday 5 November. Staff will be dressed 80s style to help get everyone in the party mood.

Fun events include a poolside rookie lifeguard contest, dancing competitions to 80s party music including YMCA, Macarena and more. Fun games in the pool include races across the giant inflatable, a diving competition, a treasure hunt, nursery rhymes and a sinking and floating competition.  

Away from the pool, street theatre, face painters and magicians will keep everyone entertained. Highlights include Tom Rolfe circus skills, Professor Nincompoop Balloon magic and the Pocket Orchestra who will be playing music from the 80s.

In addition, visitors will have the chance to name the teddy and guess how many sweets are in the jar for the chance to win more prizes; proceeds from these will go to charity. The weekend will mark the end of a month of birthday celebrations.

The leisure centre was officially opened on 2 November 1982 by athlete Sir Roger Bannister, who ran the first four-minute mile, boasting a range of social, sporting and recreational facilities including swimming pools, squash courts, five-a-side football pitches, fitness room and badminton courts.

It has attracted millions of visitors over the years including some from as far afield as America, South Africa, New Zealand, mainland Europe and Australia.

Mike Crawshaw, Darlington Borough Council’s head of Leisure and Culture, said:

“We want everyone to come along this weekend and help us celebrate and, most of all, have a fantastic time. We’ve gone for a throwback to the 80s theme but won’t forget that, since opening, the centre has developed and boasts excellent facilities catering for a wide range of sports and leisure interests.

“A big thank you goes out to our team here and to our loyal customers and a happy birthday to the Centre.”

For more information about other events and facilities at the Dolphin Centre, log onto the website www.healthydarlington.co.uk  or call 01325 406000.