Doors Open Day – Govanhill Pool

November 6, 2008 by  
Filed under Glasgow South, Local News

A staggering 1,000 people queued for hours to enjoy tours of Govanhill Baths, during the annual Doors Open festival. The facility – closed seven years ago by Glasgow City Council despite massive opposition and a lengthy sit-in by local people – now has a future. Govanhill Baths Community Trust (GBCT) was set up specifically to re-open the B listed, Edwardian Baroque-styled building dating from 1917 and their plans were on view for all to see.

Govanhill Baths

Between £8.5 and £10 million will be needed to transfom the place into a Sports and Wellbeing Centre and the Trust aims to open on 21 March 2011- 94 years to the day when it first opened its doors. 

The plans show that the three existing pools would be kept along with many of the original features. There would be a Turkish sauna, a rooftop garden, a café and an asthma clinic as well as a gymnasium and theatre/cinema, crèche, housing complex, retail and community space.  

Andrew Johnson, Chairman of the Trust and one of the original campaigners, said: ‘We believe the people have turned out on Doors Open because the closure of these baths by the Council hit a deep-seated nerve. People were treated with so much disrespect when the pool was closed.   I believe they have come to the Baths Doors Open day to make a statement against undemocratic decisions and because they believe that a community has a right to make its own decisions about its destiny and needs’

Danny Alderslowe, Southside Councillor for the Scottish Green Party, who took part in the 140 day sit-in, said: ‘The opening has been an emotional day for me. I feel horror at the negative impact the closure has had in terms of the health of the local people.’Esther Saussman helps tidy up the pool


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