Significant Events in the History of the Institute 1920 to 1929


4th August
Letter sent by Mr. J. H. T. Jowett, Superintendent Central Baths, Ealing sent to Bath Superintendents in London. The letter received 27 favourable replies.


6th December
Eighteen interested persons attended a meeting convened at Caxton Hall, Hammersmith to explore the formation of an Association for Bath and Assistant Bath Superintendents. In attendance were;


Mr. Simmons (Holborn)

Mr. Carter (Wimbledon)

Mr. Hattersley (Whitechapel)

Mr. Cleary (Barking)

Mr. H R Austin (Beckenham)

Mr. Lewis (Tottenham)

Mr. Burrell (Acton)

Mr. Foster (Kensington)

Mr. Hewitt (Bermondsey)

Mr. Jefferson Hope (Poplar)

Mr. Johns (Essex Road, Islington)

Mr. Smith (Haggerston Baths, Shoreditch)

Mr. Day for Mr Jagger (Paddington)

Mr. Richardson (Shoreditch)

Mr. Stapleton (Hackney)

Mr. Gough (Chelsea)

Mr. Burch (Islington)

Mr. Jowett (Ealing)


Mr. Burch was elected chairman.


Mr. Richardson proposed and Mr. Hope seconded a resolution that; An ‘Association for Bath Superintendents and Assistant Superintendents’. The resolution was carried unanimously.


Mr. Stapleton moved and Mr Simmons seconded that; The Association be of a Social and Fraternal nature’ was carried.


20th January

The ‘Association of Bath Superintendents’ first Annual General Meeting was held at Pitfield Street Baths, Shoreditch by permission of the Baths Committee –


The first President: Mr. F. A. Burch (Islington) was elected.

Vice-president: Mr. Richardson (Shoreditch)

Hon. Secretary and Treasurer: Mr. L. Jefferson Hope (Poplar)

An executive committee and hon. auditors were also elected.


At the first executive meeting the President was appointed to represent the Association on the joint Consultative Committee of the NALGO (National Association of Local Government Officers). He was also appointed to be the delegate at the NALGO conference and it was decided at this meeting to extend the sphere of the Association to the whole of the United Kingdom.


The report by the President of the meeting of the NALGO Co-ordination Sub-Committee showed that the scale of salaries which had been submitted by the Association was the only one which gave entire satisfaction and it was recommended to other Societies as a model to work upon. This was particularly gratifying as ours was the youngest association affiliated to the NALGO.


Members 31


15th December
It was reported by the Hon. Secretary that as a result of a circular letter to all Bath Superintendents in the United Kingdom, nearly 600 in number, four replies had been received, Mr. Swarbrick (Blackpool), Mr. Mainprize (Derby), Mr. Tootell (Burnley) and Mr. Wilson (Swinton).


The provisions of the Local Government and Other Officers Superannuation Bill were considered and a sub-committee was appointed to deal with the matter and the Association asked NALGO to use their best endeavours to make the Bill a compulsory one. During that year, too, the question of instituting an examination scheme for Bath Superintendents was dealt with – March


2nd President: Mr. O. B. Richardson (Worthing)

 Secretary and Treasurer: Mr. Jefferson Hope (Poplar)


33 Members



3rd President: Mr. H. R. Austin (Beckenham)

Hon. Secretary: Mr J. H. T. Jowett

Hon. Treasurer: Mr J. H. Derbyshire


59 Members


The question of filtration and purification of bath water was discussed on several occasions, as already indicated most baths were still on the ‘fill and empty’ system and Mr Burch took a leading part in the possibilities of filtration.


A further invitation to all superintendents in England and Wales, 594 in all, resulted in twenty new members joining the Association making a total of fifty-nine.


27th March

All the superintendents in Leeds joined the Association and Mr Sowary, who was in charge of the Leeds Department, asked for permission to arrange a meeting at Leeds of the members in the north of England with a view to forming a northern branch. This is the first mention of branches in the Association.


The Northern District Branch of the Association founded. Twenty-seven members were transferred to it from the parent body. Mr Sowary was elected first Branch president and Mr. Swarbrick, vice-president. Meetings of the Northern Branch were successfully held at Blackpool, Sheffield and Nottingham. The last named town was later transferred to the Midland Branch upon its formation.


An important step was the publishing of the report on ‘Water in Public Baths’ and a copy was sent to every superintendent in England, and Wales and copies also supplied to many municipal and other bodies at their request. The report was the result of much deliberation and discussion at meetings and it was recorded that;

‘it is satisfactory to be able to record that it has received very little adverse criticism’. The Minister of Health was asked to approve the general adoption of filtration in swimming baths. As Mr Austin later put it ‘this small band gave their attention in those first four years very closely and very earnestly to the consideration of the question of the improvement of the condition of the water in swimming baths and when we were only five years old, a young unheard of Association, we had the temerity to present a Report to the Ministry of Health, asking that they would approve the adoption of filtration and purification as a general principle. If the Association had never done anything else, I think that work would have given good reason for its foundation and existence!

But it did not stop there: we have made other suggestions. It was this Association, which first advocated the removal of the dressing boxes, with all the attendant disadvantages, from the surround of the swimming bath to a compartment outside.’


4th President: Mr. L. Jefferson Hope (Poplar)

104 members



The ‘Association of Bath Superintendents’

First Annual Conference held in Leeds at the Griffin Hotel – May 7th – 8th

The Annual General Meeting was held in the Town Hall, Council Chamber.

5th President: Mr. H. R. Austin (Beckenham)

Hon Secretary: Mr. J. H. T. Jowett (Central Baths, Ealing)

Hon. Treasurer: Mr. J. H. Derbyshire (Hammersmith)

The President Mr. H. R. Austin, Beckenham, gave the first paper entitled ‘Public Baths and Public Health’.


137 Members



Northern District of the ‘Association of Bath Superintendents’ established


Second Annual Conference Nottingham – June 24th – 25th

6th President: Mr. H. R. Austin (Beckenham)

Hon Secretary: Mr. J. H. T. Jowett (Central Baths, Ealing)

Hon. Treasurer: Mr. J. H. Derbyshire (Hammersmith)

153 Members


During the course of the proceedings, Alderman Pendleton of Nottingham suggested that the name of the ‘Association’ should be altered to ‘Institute’. The change advocated in 1926 took place in 1962.


During the year the Executive explored the question of admission of honorary and associate members, and a scheme for examination and certificate of candidates for membership.


It was noted that the Scottish Association have communicated several times as they are desirous of further interchange of papers and visits.



Third Annual Conference Bradford – 19th May

7th President: Mr. J. D. Sutton (West Ham)

Hon Secretary: Mr. J. H. T. Jowett (Central Baths, Ealing)

Hon. Treasurer: Mr. J. H. Derbyshire (Hammersmith)

Conference attended by a Representative of the Ministry of Health Mr. G.H. Thisleton Dyer M.I.C.E.


The Minister of Health restricted attendances of delegates at the Association’s conference to towns with a population of not less than fifty thousand.


The President said that before calling upon the reader of the first paper he should like to say what a disappointment it had been to many of their members who represented small places that they were unable to be present on account of the decision of the Ministry of Health with regard to the 50,000 population restriction. On that account many of their members who were present the previous year at Nottingham were absent today. Everyone he was sure regretted the decision of the Ministry, but hoped that in time for their next gathering that restriction would be modified or repealed.


Mr. Cyrus T. Clissitt (Newport) moved and Mr. T. Powell (Walthamstow)  seconded a resolution that the conference pass a resolution to be sent to the Minister regretting the decision of the Ministry which prohibited authorities with a population under 50,000 from being represented at tat conference, and asking that steps be taken to remove that disability.


First Conference attended by a Representative of the Ministry of Health Mr. G. H. Thistleton-Dyer.



Fourth Annual Conference Blackpool – May 10th – 11th

8th President: Mr. R. L. Swarbrick (Blackpool)

Hon Secretary: Mr. J. H. T. Jowett (Central Baths, Ealing)

Hon. Treasurer: Mr. J. H. Derbyshire (Hammersmith)

Conference attended by a Representative of the Ministry of Health Dr. H. T. Calvert


Midland District of the ‘Association of Bath Superintendents’ established.


Fifth Annual Conference Bradford – May 9th – 10th

9th President: Mr. G. H. Fouracre (Woolwich)

Hon Secretary: Mr. J. H. T. Jowett (Central Baths, Ealing)

Hon. Treasurer: Mr. J. H. Derbyshire (Hammersmith)

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