Liverpool

Key dates and events

1794 Borough Council purchased privately-owned Public Baths in Bath Street.

1816 June 11th A floating bath (privately owned) built in the form of a ship was launched in June 1816 and moored off the George’s Pier Head.

1820 Bath Street Public Baths demolished to make way for the new Princes Dock

1828 The first Public Baths establishment erected and opened by the Corporation at St George’s Pier Head.

1832 Cholera Epidemic Between 12th May and 13th September there were within the city 4,977 cases of cholera, of which 1,523 were fatal. On the 5th October the City was declared free of cholera.

Health and Town Committee established with the special committee on public baths and wash-houses was incorporated with it.

1842 February 14th Salaries for the Superintendent agreed to be £60 and £30 for the matron recommended and the positions to be advertised in the Liverpool newspapers. Testimonials were to be delivered before the 11th April. This process attracted 104 applicants and a special sub-committee attended to the sifting process.

1842 April 20th Andrew Clarke and his wife were selected as the first superintendent and matron to the Upper Frederick Street Baths. This decision was subsequently approved at the town council meeting on the 6th May 1842. The resolution reads ‘Recommended that Andrew Clarke and his wife be appointed keeper and matron of the baths and wash-house in Frederick Street.’

1842 May 28th First Public Wash House and Private Baths establishment in the country erected and opened by the Corporation in Frederick Street.

1842 Liverpool Sanitation Report – the polluter pays!

1846 June 9th The town council resolve to appoint Andrew Clarke and his wife to the roles of superintendent and matron at an increased salary of £120 to the new Paul Street Baths and Wash House, this being as a result of their success at the Frederick Street establishment.

1846 September 2nd the town council received a recommendation and approved the appointment of Thomas and Catherine Wilkinson as the next superintendent and matron at the Frederick Street establishment.

1846 July (approx) Paul Street Baths and Wash House opened.

1847 January 1st W H Duncan appointed as the first Public Health Officer

1847 James Newlands appointed Borough Engineer.

1851 April 22nd Frederick Street wash-house closed.

1851 May Cornwallis Street Baths opened.

1852 February 9th baths committee of the town council established. Baths and Wash House establishments were previously the responsibility of the Health Committee.

1854 May 1st Frederick Street Baths re-opened after development and John Clarkson and his wife were appointed as superintendent and matron at a combined salary of £140 per annum.

1860 Kitty Wilkinson died aged 74.

1863 June Margaret Street Baths opened.

1863 July 20th Margaret Street, first Swimming Gala

1874 April Steble Street Baths and Wash House opened.

1865 Myrtle Street Gymnasium official opening.

1877 April Westminster Road Baths opened.

1878 August Lodge Lane Baths and Wash House opened.

1879 January Paul Street Baths and Wash House closed.

1889 March Newhall (Cottage Homes including pool) opened.

1890 September 13th Lodge Lane, first Polo Match

1893 Woolton Baths opened by Urban District Council

1895 July Burlington Street free open-air baths opened.

1898 August Gore Street free open-air baths opened.

1899 March Green Lane free open-air baths opened.

1899 June Mansfield Street free open-air baths opened.

1902 July Beacon Street Baths opened.

1904 May Lister Drive Baths opened

1905 July Springfield Street Wash House (Old Swan) opened.

1906 May Picton Road Baths opened.

1906 October Pier Head Baths closed and demolished.

1907 August Speke Road Baths (Garston) opened.

1909 April Queens Drive Baths opened.

1911 March Netherfield Road Wash House opened.

1913 November Woolton Baths taken over by the Corporation, on extension of City Boundary.

1914-1918 First World War.

1922 August 26th 200 yards breaststroke record set in Garston by Irene Gilbert.

1923 February Netherfield Road Wash House extension completed.

1923 July Stanley Park open-air baths opened.

1925 February Frederick Street Public Wash House closed and replaced by newly erected Wash House in Gilbert Street.

1927 January Minshull Street Wash House opened.

1928 August Lodge Lane Wash House reconstructed and modernised.

1929 September 25th 200 yards breaststroke record set at Queens Drive by Marjorie Hinton.

1930 May Steble Street Wash House reconstructed and modernised.

1931 May Burroughs Gardens Wash House completely reconstructed on an adjoining new site and modernised.

1931 October Solomon Street Wash House (Kensington) opened.

1932 September Departmental Central Laundry, Burroughs Gardens, erected on site of old Wash House, and opened.

1935 July Donaldson Street Wash House opened.

1935 September Clare Street Wash House opened.

1936 Electric Irons introduced into public Wash Houses.

1936 April William Roberts Baths, Norris Green, opened.

1936 June Harold Davies Baths, Dovecot, opened. 1939-1945 Second World War

1941 Artificial Sun Baths transferred from Cornwallis Street to Picton Road.

1945 Due to extensive bomb damage, Burlington Street, Gore Street and Mansfield Street open air baths did not re-open after the war.

1949 July 26th Picton Road, first step in mechanisation of wash houses.

1949 August 4th Lister Drive, re-opened after repairs to war damage.

1951 April Russian Baths made available to women – for one day a week!

1951 July 28th Festival of Britain Gala held at Harold Davies. 1953. Green Lane open air baths closed.

1952 February CENTENARY OF BATHS COMMITTEE.

1960, August Stanley Park open air pool closed.

1962 September 10th Fred Robinson Wash House opened.

1964 (approx) Breckside Pool opened.

1964 December 31st Beacon Street Baths closed

1965 March 11th Austin Rawlinson Pool (Speke) opened.

1966 March Gilbert Street Private Baths closed.

1966 March 16th Netherfield Road Launderette conversion.

1966 March 16th Melrose Road Laundry modernised.

1967 July 31st First Learn to Swim Campaign (36,000 attended)

1967 December 24 Cornwallis Street closed.

1968 December 24 Minshull Street Wash House closed.

1969 October Gilbert Street closed.

1969 September 27 Clare Street closed.

1969 September 29 Vauxhall Laundry opened.

1969 Lodge Lane Wash House modernised.

1969 Park Road Launderette conversion.

1969 Picton small pool modernised.

1970 October Old Swan Wash House closed.

1970 (approx) Burroughs Gardnes Launderette.

1970 Bronte Laundry (St Andrews) opened.

1972 Donaldson Street Launderette conversion.

1972 (approx). Kensington Launderette conversion.

1974 Picton Wash House closed.

1976 (approx) Westminster Road 2nd pool/slipper baths to sports hall.

1975 October 30th. Belle Vale Pool opened.

1977 Garston Launderette conversion.

1978 January. Picton Sports Hall opened.

1979 Everton Sports Centre opened.

1979 Austin Rawlinson Wash House converted to boxing gym.

1980 November 28th. Bronte Laundry closed (transferred to Liver Laundry).

1981 July Garston Launderette converted to Sports Hall.

1982 January 9th. Vauxhall Laundry closed.

1982 April Lodge Lane Wash House converted to minor sports hall.

1983 March Toxteth All Weather Pitch opened.

1983 Park Road Launderette converted to gymnastics facility.

1983 December 23rd Melrose Road closed.

1984 April/May Toxteth S C opened.

1984 May Picton All Weather Pitch opened.

1984 May Flinders Street All Weather Pitch opened (William Collins)

1984 (approx) Park Road Health Suite opened.

1985. Margaret Street closed.

1985 Closure of Burroughs Gardens.

1985 May. Walton All Weather Pitch opened.

1985 Everton Swimming Pool opened.

1985 May 9th. Netherley S C opened for dual use.

1985 August Walton S C opened (SASH),

1985 August Garston S C opened (SASH).

1985 August Croxteth S C opened (Red Triangle).

1985 August Austin Rawlinson S C opened. (SASH)

1986 Lambeth Boxing Gym established.

1986 August Fazakerley S C opened. (SASH)

1987 Lister Drive Baths closed.

1987 June 4th Peter Lloyd Leisure Centre opened.

1987 August 21st Wavertree Athletics Track and Hall opened.

1988 March Harold Davies closed.

1988 November Fred Robinson Launderette opened.

1988 Parks and Baths services seperated.

1989 May Fred Robinson Laundry Pensioners Service started.

1990 April 3rd Lodge Lane closed.

1991 July Damwood Hall re-opened within Sport and Recreation.

1991 September 20th Park Road Gymnastics Extension opened.

1993 June Netherley All Weather Pitch opened.

1993 June Croxteth All Weather Pitch opened.

1993 July 9th Netherley S C transferred to Leisure Services.

1993 October 30th Liverpool Tennis Centre opened.

1993 October Fazakerley Pulse Lifestyles Fitness opened

1993 November Garston Pulse Lifestyles Fitness opened

1993 November  Peter Lloyd Pulse Lifestyles Fitness opened

1993 November  Walton Pulse Lifestyles Fitness opened

1994 December 4th Wavertree A C Grandstand facility opened.

1994 Closure of Picton Health Suite.

1994 July Everton Pulse Lifestyles Fitness opened

1994 November Queens Drive Pulse Lifestyles Fitness opened

1995 January 15th William Roberts pools closed, boxing and weights room only.

1995 June Picton Pulse Lifestyles Fitness opened

1995 September Toxteth All Weather Pitch refurbished.

1995 December 14th William Roberts facility in total closed and boxing facility transferred to “Ellergreen ex 6th form block”.

1995 December 22nd Fred Robinson laundry facility closed. The end of this Council delivered service spanning 153 years.

1996 January 8th Provision of laundry pick-up service provided by a private firm, Clean Team.

1996 July 8th Harlow Street All Weather Pitch opened.

1996 May 12th Fire in ladies changing area closes Austin Rawlinson Pool. The Pool re-opened August 19th.

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10 Responses to “Liverpool”

  1. Liverpool washhouses | Kiroset says:

    [...] Liverpool Baths and Wash Houses – Baths and Wash Houses …Liverpool Baths and Wash Houses. Key dates and events. 1794 Borough Council purchased privately-owned Public Baths in Bath Street. 1816 June 11th A … [...]

    • jacquie says:

      Can anyone give me any information on Lodge lane Baths…..information on who owns it now and any pictures etc would be appreciated…..thanks

  2. Tom Hughes says:

    Have many memories of queens drive baths,from1948 to 1958 I recall
    there where 3baths,the main competetive 25 yds on the right
    as one entered the foyer,I swam for Arnot st school,plus the boy scouts garlas,eventually representing the city of Liverpool.

    At the rear of the building,there was an open air pool,on one of
    our naughty scouse adventures about 3/4 of us climbed over the
    barbed wall,when the baths where closed,about jan/feb time and
    breaking the ice, we dived in the half empty pool,we came out
    faster than we dived in,very lucky we came to no harm?
    memorial enjoyable times in my liverpool days.

    Have been living in Spain the past 26 years,

    Tom Hughes

    • Rob says:

      Hiya Tom

      Saw your post regarding Queens Drive Baths. Was so funny and just great to read your description, glad you came out alive. Am a generation behind similar antics in Walton and Norris Green. I live in Minnesota, USA, now but missing the “pool”
      Enjoy life in the Spanish climate, thanks for posting.

      Rob.

    • Colin Roberts says:

      Hi Tom

      I went to Arnot St too! Its demolished now though, but was the best school in Liverpool I think. I swan at Queens Drive too..although I suspect you were older than me, I was at school from 1960 to 64 when I left to go to work. Its just nice to see someone who did the same things as me!! Take care mate.

  3. Anon says:

    Re’ your request for contact with Peter Ellison, Talk Of The Wash Houses … Peter Ellison works/worked for Liverpool City Council,Leisure Services Dept.

  4. Sue Carmichael says:

    Oral History project about Grade 2 Listed Woolton Baths(1893- end of June2103 will be its 120th birthday !!)
    We are looking for any memories/ memorabilia/ photos about the Baths, both swimming in the pool and/ or also using the private baths. There was also a laundry in the building – can anyone recall how and when this was used ?

    Also any info on private washouses in and around Woolton; we know of several as some local women did laundry as a business. We hope to find some with artefacts inside.

  5. Peter bell says:

    Hi I I went to dovecot (harrold Davis) baths in the. 1950s. Health & safety never entered the frame, in the summer months. It got packed you could hardly move in there all the lockers were used, so you had to change on the galleries leaving your clothes in a heap. On the seats, odds on when you returned some of your kit had need taxed ( your bus fare home maybe). happy or not so happy days

  6. Pat Allport (Mrs) says:

    Hi
    Me and my mate Linda Haskayne used to walk to Woolton Baths regularly. We lived in Lee Park at the time. Sometimes we’d walk up Gateacre Brow and along Acrefield Road right along until the Elephant Pub. (I don’t know if this Pub is still there) Once we got there, we just had to walk up to the Baths. And sometimes we would walk by the Nook and across Out Lane field and up Kings Drive. We would probably been about 8-9 (1966) at the time.

    We would go to the baths, and our neighbour’s son, Pudgie, worked at the baths and would let us in if he saw us. But if he didn’t see us, we would have to pay a tanner to get in. There was no time limit on how long you got, and we had a great time and spent many hours there, then we would walk home.

    I also knew of a some lads from our secondary school,from Woolton Village, David Burrows, and Paul Forrest, (I don’t see them now – I left school a long time ago) and they used to play water polo at Woolton Baths when the pool was closed to the public, I think this was a Tuesday evening, I also seem to think it was a late Saturday afternoon as well, but I could be wrong – memory is not what is was!

  7. I have happy memories of Dovecote Baths in the late 1940’s Ilearned to swim there on my own managing to do a length in the deep end.[one of my greatest achievements!!!]i must have been about 13 or 14.I then progressed to joining Everton S.C.The classes were taken by Pop Wilson.I made many friends there.girls and boys.
    Dovecote baths or The Harold Roberts baths to give it’s proper title was a fantastic place.Three pools,a beginners pool,a diving pool,10 feet deep,1 and 3 metre springboards and a 5 metre top board which we all aspired to dive from.I and mates went regularly Sat morning’s swim hot shower swim hot shower again and again. Happy days.
    The pool and it’s twin The Tuebrook William Roberts closed in 1988 due partly to structural problems.

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