Page 98



LUCKY DIP hanks to the 1846

cuts, an increasing number of

Baths and Wash

historic pools are being brought

House Act, the

back to life. “I like to think that

UK has one of the

we’re on a roll,” says Gill Wright,

largest collections

founder of Historic Pools of

of historic swimming

Britain, a charitable organisation

pools in the world.

which aims to share best practice

Almost a century

among historic pools and raise

of municipal pool

their profile. “The rate of closures

design led to hundreds of pools

has slowed down and, despite the

being created, representing

difficult economy, we are seeing

ambitions in both architecture and

a resurgence of historic pools.”

the improvement of public health.

This welcome turn of events

Sadly, in so many cases, their

is attributable to a few factors,

beauty and grandeur has faded,

according to Wright. Firstly,

and they have become costly

a growing interest in outdoor

burdens for those who have to

swimming led to a resurgence in

keep them. Over the years, as many local authorities failed

The UK has a rich network of historic pools,

historic lidos, with many being restored, and this momentum

to make them operationally

but over the years many have closed down.

viable, more than half of the

Now, thanks to a renewed appreciation

Secondly, historic pools have been

of these architectural beauties, they are

and community groups who

coming back to life. Kath Hudson reports

and have thought creatively.

UK’s historic pools closed. Fortunately, the tide now appears to have turned. Despite years of closures and budget

98 3 2019

has spilled over to indoor pools. championed by leisure trusts have taken on the management

Profile for Leisure Media

CLADmag issue3 2019  

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