Listed Building

The only legal part of the listing under the Planning (Listing Buildings and Conservation Areas) (Scotland) Act 1997 is the address/name of site. Addresses and building names may have changed since the date of listing – see 'About Listed Buildings' below for more information. The further details below the 'Address/Name of Site' are provided for information purposes only.

Address/Name of Site

BRUCE STREET, FORMER PUBLIC BATHS FACADE AND SWIMMING POOLLB51432

Status: Designated

Documents

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Summary

Category
C
Date Added
03/03/2010
Local Authority
West Dunbartonshire
Planning Authority
West Dunbartonshire
Burgh
Clydebank
NGR
NS 49555 70094
Coordinates
249555, 670094

Description

Master of Works, Clydebank Burgh Council, opened 1932. 3-bay stylised Baroque former Swimming Pool with 7-bay, single storey retained facade to former Public Baths to right (see Notes). Sandstone ashlar. Base course, band course, cornice. Rusticated, key-stoned openings. Public Baths facade with round-arched entrance openings and segmental arched window openings. Bracketted cills.

FURTHER DESCRIPTION: swimming pool to left. Centre bay with large, segmental-arched, 6-light, window with stone mullion and transomed window with Clydebank Coat-of-Arms above and broken wallhead pediment with central obelisk breaking eaves above. Flanking pilasters with urns at wallhead.

Predominantly fixed timber windows with small pane glazing. Open window openings to baths façade. Grey slates. swimming pool roof barrel-vaulted with large raised gabled rooflight.

INTERIOR: (seen 2009). Original layout to swimming pool largely intact. Reinforced concrete roof trusses. Decorative metal railings to stairs and upper and lower levels of poolside. Rows of changing rooms to poolside upper level with timber half doors. Internal pool steps at corners. Cast-iron and timber turnstile in situ. Entrance hall with internal glass and timber pay office with cupboards, shelves and high level windows. Garden laid out in former public baths area. Public baths demolished behind façade (2010).

Statement of Special Interest

This is a good example of a former swimming pool with part of the adjoning former public baths façade retained. Once a relatively common building type in urban Scotland, public baths have become obsolete and modern leisure centres have largely replaced traditional swimming pools. The retention of the public baths façade is a reminder of the importance of this building type.The building is a significant addition to the streetscape and it was purposefully designed to match the style of the earlier, 1902 Municipal Buildings in Dumbarton Road (see separate listing) by the Glasgow architect James Miller. Together, the buildings form the major part of a complete block and form a coherent civic centre in Clydebank The Baroque Revival design gives the building a distinctive appearance and the street elevation of the whole has significant streetscape value. The interior has interest in particular for its little altered swimming pool hall with decorative metal railings.

Swimming clubs and bath houses were established in Scotland from the 1850s following the enactment of the 1846 Act to Encourage the Establishment of Public Baths and Wash-houses, which was established to improve general public health with access for all classes of citizen. With the rapid expansion of urban population, often living and working in unsanitary conditions, bath and wash houses were seen as essential public services. The Act, which affected the entirety of Britain, encouraged local authorities to open up these facilities in areas of dense population. While men and women did not mix at these facilities, women would have had their own separate entrance, however they would have to attend at certain times when the male pools were not in use. It would not be until the 1870s when separate ladies pools were being considered in bath and wash house design. These bath and wash houses soon started to cater for recreational swimming rather than washing and this became a hugely popular social past time during the 20th century.

Built in the 1930s, this is a relatively late example and probably indicates that there were still a significant number of homes in Clydebank at this time with no bathing facilities.

The Bruce Street Baths was designed to replace the nearby Hall Street Baths (now demolished) which were becoming too small. The plans were approved by the Council in 1929 and the baths were opened in 1932. It originally had a variety of facilities, including Turkish Baths, Russian Vapour Baths, a laundry and a massage room. The public baths were originally 2-storeys in height. The building was largely demolished in 2010 with one storey if the street façade being retained and the area is now a garden.

List description updated as part of the sporting buildings thematic study (2012-13).

References

Bibliography

Ordnance Survey Map, 1935-8. Dr Ian Gordon and Simon Inglis, Great Lengths, The historic indoor swimming pools of Britain, (2009). Other information from Clydebank Heritage Trust, West Dunbartonshire Council and Douglas Campbell from Aberdeen City Heritage Trust.

About Listed Buildings

Historic Environment Scotland is responsible for designating sites and places at the national level. These designations are Scheduled monuments, Listed buildings, Inventory of gardens and designed landscapes and Inventory of historic battlefields.

We make recommendations to the Scottish Government about historic marine protected areas, and the Scottish Ministers decide whether to designate.

Listing is the process that identifies, designates and provides statutory protection for buildings of special architectural or historic interest as set out in the Planning (Listed Buildings and Conservation Areas) (Scotland) Act 1997.

We list buildings which are found to be of special architectural or historic interest using the selection guidance published in Designation Policy and Selection Guidance (2019)

Listed building records provide an indication of the special architectural or historic interest of the listed building which has been identified by its statutory address. The description and additional information provided are supplementary and have no legal weight.

These records are not definitive historical accounts or a complete description of the building(s). If part of a building is not described it does not mean it is not listed. The format of the listed building record has changed over time. Earlier records may be brief and some information will not have been recorded.

The legal part of the listing is the address/name of site which is known as the statutory address. Other than the name or address of a listed building, further details are provided for information purposes only. Historic Environment Scotland does not accept any liability for any loss or damage suffered as a consequence of inaccuracies in the information provided. Addresses and building names may have changed since the date of listing. Even if a number or name is missing from a listing address it will still be listed. Listing covers both the exterior and the interior and any object or structure fixed to the building. Listing also applies to buildings or structures not physically attached but which are part of the curtilage (or land) of the listed building as long as they were erected before 1 July 1948.

While Historic Environment Scotland is responsible for designating listed buildings, the planning authority is responsible for determining what is covered by the listing, including what is listed through curtilage. However, for listed buildings designated or for listings amended from 1 October 2015, legal exclusions to the listing may apply.

If part of a building is not listed, it will say that it is excluded in the statutory address and in the statement of special interest in the listed building record. The statement will use the word 'excluding' and quote the relevant section of the 1997 Act. Some earlier listed building records may use the word 'excluding', but if the Act is not quoted, the record has not been revised to reflect subsequent legislation.

Listed building consent is required for changes to a listed building which affect its character as a building of special architectural or historic interest. The relevant planning authority is the point of contact for applications for listed building consent.

Find out more about listing and our other designations at www.historicenvironment.scot/advice-and-support. You can contact us on 0131 668 8914 or at designations@hes.scot.

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Printed: 15/06/2021 07:33