Broomhill Pool will re-open in 2021; the not-for-profit charity trust, Fusion-Lifestyle have raised seven million pounds (£3.5m from the Heritage Lottery Fund, £1.5m from Ipswich Borough Council and £2m from themselves). They have signed a 50 year operating lease with the Borough and have carried out numerous surveys and have Listed building consent and planning permission. This has cost around £250,000. Detailed plans will now be produced by our local consultants – headed by KLH architects – and contractors appointed. It is hoped that work will start next year and the time-scale is for the pool to be open for business by spring 2021.
The aim is to restore the pool to its 1938 state, except that the former male changing rooms on the east side will be replaced by a two storey new-build fitness suite: open all year round. The clock tower, the buffet, the underwater area and some overhead lighting will be restored together with the Listed and unique diving-boards (though only the lower boards will be able to be used for safety reasons).
The water will have the chill taken off; initially it will open for the traditional summer period but it is hoped that this will be extended in the future. The facility will provide around twenty-two full-time equivalent posts. The pool closed in 2001 so it will have taken twenty years to get it restored.
Note on the above news
Twenty years ago, three Ipswich Society delegates were sent by then Chairman Jack Chapman to the three new Scrutiny Committees (for the Corn Exchange, the Regent Theatre and Broomhill Pool) to help get each facility back on track. Neil Salmon and I took the Regent and the Corn Exchange; Mike Cook was allocated Broomhill, became Chairman of the new Broomhill Trust and the rest is history. The Regent and the Corn Exchange were sorted within months, Broomhill took twenty years. Well done, Mike.