Celebrating Stonehaven Open Air Pool’s 90th birthday

In June we are heading to the pretty harbour town of Stonehaven in Aberdeenshire where we’ll be joining in the celebrations for the 90th birthday of Stonehaven Open Air Pool.

Stonehaven © Visit Scotland

This is a pool that had quite an incredible beginning, thanks to the 1930s heyday that lidos experienced.  In 1933 a poll was carried out of Stonehaven householders and with a positive response the pool was built the following year opening on 4 June 1934 at a cost of £9,529.  What a way to do things!

Stonehaven Open Air Pool

Getting to Stonehaven will be quite a journey for many and we want to make the most of our visit to the area so this event will take place over Tuesday 18 and Wednesday 19 June and combine a visit to Bon Accord Baths in Aberdeen.

We start on Tuesday 18 June in Aberdeen with a guided tour of Bon Accord Baths – which has been closed since 2008 – and hear about the campaign that is being led by Bon Accord Heritage that aims to achieve its reopening.  The Category B-listed complex was built during the late 1930s and opened in 1940 at a time when German bombing raids were taking place on Aberdeen, which was hit hard in the Blitz of World War II.  For many the opening was a morale-booster during the dark days of war and Bon Accord has played a special role in the community ever since.  The tour will take HPB guests behind the scenes of the Art Deco pool and we’ll hear more about the role that the building plays in the community as a cultural space and the future plans.  The tour will start at 5pm and finish at 6.30pm.

Bon Accord Baths

Then we’ll be heading into Stonehaven where a social supper is being organised at The Ship Inn at 7:30pm (additional to the ticket price and a flexible option) and for those staying over we have a list of accommodation ideas that can be shared.  We begin Wednesday 19 June with a morning (hot drinks from 9am) of talks at Stonehaven Community Centre, which will include the team from Stonehaven; Lucy Janes, who is part of the History Group at Arlington Baths Club; Jo Matheison from Edinburgh Leisure and introducing the second edition of the Lido Guide will be co-author Emma Pusill.

Then a walking tour will lead us across Cowie Water and around the harbour to see the sights on the way to Stonehaven Open Air Pool.  As well as a tour of the pool there will be time for a swim and lunch will be served at 1pm for all attendees to enjoy.  The event will conclude by 2pm.

To book your place please email Clare@historicpools.org.uk and please advise whether you will also be joining us at Bon Accord and for supper at The Ship Inn.

Pool members automatically receive two free places and individual membership comes with one free place – for each there is a small charge of £16 per person to cover lunch and refreshments throughout the day.  Swimming is included.  

Non-member places are open to anyone and cost £50 including lunch, refreshments and a swim.