Jubilee Pool in Penzance holds a special place in our hearts. Some of us learned to swim in the lido, many of us have swum in the pool and sunbathed on the side, Neil even used to clean the pool between seasons when he was at college, and one of our very first Seasalt photoshoots took place there.
The beautiful art deco pool was opened in 1935 to celebrate King George V’s Silver Jubilee, but was forced to close after suffering severe structural damage during storms in 2014. The damage was costly, and the community have been working tirelessly to raise money through fundraising and securing grants to help with the rebuild.
We’ve been big supporters of the pool, helping to raise money through the sale of Save Our Lido charity tote bags and car stickers, so we were delighted when the pool had secured enough money to start the redevelopment.
We were lucky enough to be invited to the official reopening of Jubilee Pool, and we couldn’t have had a better day for it. The sun was shining, the blue skies were clear of clouds and the mercury hit a balmy 24°C. The water looked so inviting Neil couldn’t wait any longer and was the first to jump in, making the most of having the pool to himself. He wasn’t alone for long, the sparkling pool water soon tempted people in. Bright swimming costumes and a few floral swimming caps were donned, and the pool was once again full of people enjoying themselves. Those without bathing suits kicked off their shoes, hitched up their skirts or rolled up their trousers and paddled in the toddler pool.
The pool was buzzing with anticipation of the arrival of HRH Prince Charles, who officially opened the lido. Local school children lined the railings and residents waited on the pavements to greet the Prince. During his time at the pool Prince Charles met with local residents, fundraisers and the construction workers who worked on restoring the lido. He even had time for a quick chat to Neil and Sophie!
The pool itself was a hive of activity. Aside from the swimmers there were numerous demonstrations to showcase the activities on offer at the pool. Poolside yoga, stand-up paddle boarding, lifesaving, water polo, and one-on-one swimming lessons were going on around the pool, all serenaded by saxophone quartet, The Four Tunes. Near the entrance, Jubilee Pool’s past was on display. Knitted swimsuits, old photographs and handwritten memories of the lido, and a souvenir programme from the official opening in 1935 were strung on a washing line for all to see. It was great to see what Jubilee Pool was like in the ’30s, and even nicer to see the redevelopment of the pool has maintained all the soft curves and interesting art deco architecture – although we’re certainly glad swimsuits have a changed a bit since then!
We’d really like to thank Martin Nixon and his team for everything they have done for Penzance and for inviting us to get involved. We are in awe of everything he’s achieved, it’s wonderful to see Jubilee Pool restored to its former glory and being enjoyed again by the residents of Penzance. The hard work of Martin and the local community has certainly paid off. It’s definitely going to be a hot spot for the Seasalt team this summer.