You may ask why ‘Factory’ and why the big structures?
The name, ‘Swim Factory’ pays homage to the original manufacturing plant of McMahon’s Soft Drinks. The current site of the Swim Factory at 1 Martin Street Ipswich was the original McMahon’s Soft Drinks factory. With a home delivery service, McMahon's Soft Drinks were an icon brand in Ipswich and widely known throughout the region.
McMahon’s Soft Drinks was started by Frank McMahon, Peter’s father, in a small rented factory in West Street in 1934. By 1940 Frank bought the factory and adjoining buildings to expand operations. Over time, both sons Jim and Peter joined the family soft drink business. In 1977, after having survived the 1974 floods which inundated the Martin St site, the soft drink business moved to a larger and more modern factory at Wulkuraka.
As the soft drink market changed and became dominated by supermarkets and multi-nationals, the business ceased operating in 1991. Peter saw an opportunity to use the Martin St site and change his direction to swimming, which has been a lifelong sport for Peter.
The original factory at 1 Martin Street became the home of an indoor swim school in 1992 where thousands of Ipswich children have since learned to swim.
In 2011, again the Martin St site was inundated with flood waters. Again with the help and support from staff and Ipswich community the old McMahon’s Soft Drinks factory has survived to continue providing a service to the Ipswich community through Peter McMahon’s Swim Factory, teaching children and adults water safety and general enjoyment of the water.