Birmingham – Moseley Road Baths

The following is taken directly from The City of Birmingham Baths Department 1851 – 1951. The work was written and compiled by J. Moth M.N.A.B.S Birmingham 1951 and is presented here.

Moseley Road Baths SketchDuring the discussions in 1890 for the inclusion of the Balsall Heath district within the City Area under the City of Birmingham Extension Order, an undertaking was given to provide a Public Baths as soon as was practicable after the passing of the Bill.

The Order came into operation on the 1st October, 1891, and the Council duly instructed the Baths Committee to select a suitable site for the erection of Baths in the newly acquired district.

In view of their experiences over the Green Lane Baths, the Baths Committee decided to again join forces with the Free Libraries Committee, who, incidentally were already involved to the extent that a Library had also been promised to the residents in the negotiations concerning the incorporation of the Balsall Heath district within the new City Area.

Eventually, a site in the Moseley Road was decided upon and after some delay in completing the boring operations for a well, the construction of the premises commenced.

The Moseley Road Baths were opened to the public on the 30th October, 1907, and contained a First Class Swimming Bath with gallery for spectators, a Second Class Swimming Bath, suites of First and Second Class Private Baths for Men and Women, a Clubroom and a small Establishment Laundry.

Thus was the promise made in 1890 redeemed in 1907.

Moseley Road – Prior Private Bathing Establishment

It is interesting to record that as far back as 1846, there was a Private Bathing Establishment near the present Moseley Road Baths. These consisted of a large Swimming Bath over 100ft in length and 40ft wide, with a few Private Baths. The charges were 6d for swimming and 1s for a private bath, and in an advertisement of the times, the proprietor drew attention to the fact that ‘Stabling and other Conveniences are erected for the accommodation of Gentlemen attending in Carriages or on Horseback’.

These Baths closed at about the time the open-air bath in Cannon Hill Park was opened in 1873 and on the death of the owner, the premises were offered for sale to the Balsall Heath Local Board of Health, who, however, declined to purchase them on the grounds that the district could do without Baths, as in their opinion the facilities available at Kent Street were sufficiently near for all purposes.

 

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