Bristol's Clifton Lido to reopen

by Caroline Wilkinson | 13 Aug 2008

The 19th century Clifton Victoria Baths in Bristol, one of the oldest Grade II-listed swimming pools in the UK, is due to reopen this October following an extensive £2m restoration project, which began October 2006.

The lido will be operated by, Bristol-based restaurant group the Glass Boat Company, which has been working in collaboration with architects Marshall Kendon and English Heritage to upgrade the 885sq m facility.

When complete, the lido will boast a 24-metre outdoor infinity pool, hot tub and a spa and health suite with victorian tea rooms. There will also be a 90-cover restaurant and a poolside café.

Arne Ringer, partner in the Glass Boat Company, said: "We have a vision of the Lido being a very accessible social hub for local people as well as a destination for visitors."

Facilities at the spa include a mud room, a salt room, a solarium, two saunas and six treatment rooms as well as a space for relaxation classes such as yoga and pilates.

While the spa and restaurant is open to the public, the pool will be subscription based with a membership costing £450 a year.

General manager Mark Thwaites said: "We have already sold a third of the available subscriptions to the pool. Members of the public will be able to swim on weekday afternoons, so we are making it as accessible as we can."

The new facility was funded by private investors and through a £20,000 grant from the Low Carbon Trust to fund the development's green features. This includes solar panels and a waste heat exchange system, which is intended to keep the lido's carbon footprint to a minimum.

Full planning permission was granted for the restoration of the pool and associated buildings in 2006. When the facility closed in 1990 and was sold to housing developers it sparked a 13 year campaign to make the lido a grade II-listed building.

The 19th century Clifton Victoria Baths in Bristol, one of the oldest Grade II-listed swimming pools in the UK, is due to reopen this October following an extensive £2m restoration project, which began October 2006. The lido will be operated by, Bristol-based restaurant group the Glass Boat Company, which has been working in collaboration with architects Marshall Kendon and English Heritage to upgrade the 885sq m facility. When complete, the
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