Broomhill pool celebrates 70th birthday

AN OPEN air swimming pool has celebrated its 70th birthday as campaigners attempt to save it for future generations.Opened in April 1938, Ipswich's Broomhill swimming pool has been closed for the last six years but supporters are determined to re-open the much-loved lido to swimmers in 2010.

Russell Claydon

AN OPEN air swimming pool has celebrated its 70th birthday as campaigners attempt to save it for future generations.

Opened in April 1938, Ipswich's Broomhill swimming pool has been closed for the last six years but supporters are determined to re-open the much-loved lido to swimmers in 2010.

With work to renovate a heated facility expected to cost £3.9 million The Broomhill Trust recently secured a £1million pledge towards restoring the lido from Ipswich Borough Council and have lodged a £2m bid for funding to the East of England Heritage Lottery Fund. A decision is expected in five months time.

The 70th anniversary was marked on Saturday with the poolside opened to the public alongside family competitions, a display of vintage cares and a raffle draw. A souvenir booklet plotting the history of the lido was sold to raise money for the trust.

A barbecue in honour of the pool was also held at the Emperor Public House on Norwich Road in the evening.

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Mark Ling, fundraising and publicity officer for the Broomhill Pool Trust, said more than 500 people came along to the open day: “It provided a wonderful asset for the people of Ipswich and it is well worth fighting to preserve.”

In its heyday of the 1970s and 1980s as many as 2,000 swimmers a day packed into Broomhill pool.

To make a donation to The Broomhill Trust, a registered charity, visit the website at www.savebroomhillpool.org

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