THE countdown is on to the opening of Gourock's iconic outdoor pool for 2018.

Swimmers only have to wait another 21 days to take the plunge at the famous open air saltwater pool.

Staff at the pool, now in its 108th year, are working round the clock to get the facility ready for the annual ‘Big Jump In’ on Friday May 4.

Operations manager Stuart Boyle says they are gearing up for another epic summer season.

Stuart said: "The pool is unique, people say it's a jewel in the area's crown and it genuinely is.

"There is always a buzz about Inverclyde and beyond when it comes to this time of year.

"It's great that the council agreed to fund it so we can open for an extra four weeks, it will stay open until the end of September now."

Natalie Skee, shift leader at the pool, says she feels lucky to work at such a beautiful location which attracted over 31,000 visitors last year.

She told the Tele: "This is my third season down here.

"I love it because there is always such a lovely holiday atmosphere.

"On sunny days you feel like you're on holiday.

"Even on the days when it's miserable weather, the swimmers still come down to the pool because they love it so much.

"They swim regardless of the weather."

Before the pool opens, maintenance manager Jim Lyon and his team are grafting around the clock to get everything ready.

The rigorous procedure involves draining the pool so it can be cleaned, washed and painted.

On Tuesday, the pool will be filled again using water which is drawn from the Clyde and has been filtered.

It will take a week to heat the water and it will also be treated for people take the plunge next month.