Restoration of Kings Meadow Open Air Ladies Baths -1902. The Story

Restoration of Kings Meadow Open Air Ladies Baths -1902. The Story

Restoration Campaigners  (quote)

Our Mission is
To Preserve Reading’s Heritage
for the
Generations Past – The Memories
Generations Present – The Preservation
Generations Future – The Heritage

Restoration Kings Meadow Baths
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Tribute to Mr “Cinema” Roy Smith and Mr Charlie Burt below

After 12 years…….

“Credit to the Campaign.
There were now five bidders interested in restoring and developing the Kings Meadow Baths. After years of valiantly trying to raise the cash to renovate the building themselves, the volunteers from the the King’s Meadow Campaign are now joined by four new groups after Reading Borough Council put the site back onto the marketin November ’12.
Ideas for the site now variously include a renovated swimming pool, restaurant, cafe, ice rink, function hall, cultural centre, open air theatre and market
Whether the King’s Meadow Campaign ultimately wins the bid remains to be seen.
But its volunteers can take credit for fighting so hard since they got the building Grade II listed back in 2004.
From the bids now on the table it looks clear that the baths will be saved as some sort of cultural space for Reading people. That’s what the campaigners wanted from the start.” Would it be the “People’s Pool?

Friends Departed

Dear All, 
“With great sadness I have to tell you that we now have lost our next champion of the Baths… one who had contributed very  generously from his pension and written some most stirring letters week after week to the papers to support our campaign.  As you will remember, he himself had been crushed in his campaign to save the ABC in Friar St. and had nothing good to say about this RBC.  He had an outstanding 10k petition from residents which the council scorned. I had been out with Roy since his wife died over the last year for cafe snacks and had reminisced with him over the changing face of Reading.  I last saw him on Sunday in the Royal Berks and had tried to boost his spirit with a pair of tickets to go to the cinema but he was looking very weak and had been on strong pain killers. We made plans for another outing to his favourite greasy spoon cafe which he too had written passionately about to stop it closing. He died today.”   Bob O’Neill

restoration - Roy with bob O'Neill
Roy with Bob O’Neill Enlarge+

Also In Memory…
We saw the passing of Mr Swimming Berkshire on Christmas morning Charlie Burt.  He would have been 99 this month and now rests with his beloved wife Jen.
There are not many schoolchildren who would not have known Charlie.  He was a great stalwart of helping save Kings Meadow Pool and had taught schoolchildren to swim for many seasons here in Kings Meadow Baths.  He featured in the…
BBC “Flog it” programme also featured on this site.
Thank you dear Charlie and Mr Cinema for all your support. You will never be forgotten. Anne GJ.

Restoration - Charlie Burt - image
Charlie in Action Enlarge +


Restoration before the big clean up

Before the big clean up by the Campaigners. 35 years of rubbish and abandonment.

Watch this stirring video on “People Comments” page
Opened to the public for the first time since 1974. Many didn’t realise the building was a swimming pool



restoration - crest pre 1952