Wellington's Tawa Pool will temporarily close due to a lifeguard shortage, with six of the nine full-time roles there vacant.
Vacancies have recently been managed with some lifeguards working extra hours, changing shifts, upskilling other staff, and reducing levels of service in other areas.
But Wellington City Council has now made the difficult decision to close the pool to the general public until it can reach a more sustainable lifeguard staffing level.
The pool will open for reduced hours from this weekend and through the school holidays, before temporarily closing to the general public from July 25.
School lessons, learn to swim, and the Tawa Swim Club will be allowed to continue operating.
Across the council's pool portfolio there are 12 unfilled lifeguard positions out of 48 full-time roles.
The decision was made to close Tawa Pool because it had the largest number of vacancies, is used the least, and is in close proximity to other pools like Keith Spry and Te Rauparaha Aquatic Centre.
Recreation facilities manager Mathew Bialy said the lifeguard shortage wasn't a local issue.
"There is a major shortage of labour all around the world due to a number of factors including the impacts of COVID, immigration, OEs, and anecdotally young potential staff are interested in work with more flexibility, more pay, and less stress."
Bialy said the council has plans for a recruitment drive, better remuneration, and a roster review.
"Being a lifeguard is a great job to consider as the skills learnt are transferable to general life including learning the value of team-work, improved communication skills and fitness, increased responsibility, and the importance of giving to the community."
The new starting salary for full-time lifeguards is $51,633.
Applicants need to be 16-years-old and over, a confident swimmer, and have the availability to work weekends.
The council warned there could still be some reactive closures over the school holidays.
It's hoped the pool will reopen in October, but that decision depends on staffing numbers which will be reviewed closer to the time.