CIVIC TRUST AWARDS IN WOLVERHAMPTON
Bushbury Swimming Baths
The pool received a commendation from the Civic Trust in 1969. The citation reads: "The building is commended for the vigorous and, if the word may be used, noble form which it makes in the landscape. It is a form, moreover, which reflects closely the interior space, the way it functions, and the views out from it. The architect has tackled and solved very successfully the problem of relating a large single unit building to open sweeping landscape". The architect was A. Chapman, the then Borough Architect. The contractor was John F. Hughes Ltd.
The baths are indeed almost the last urban outpost of Wolverhampton before the countryside is reached. They are sited just below the ridge of Bushbury Heights, which is still open space. One doubts, however, whether the "noble form" was much appreciated locally, either at the time or since, but one can see that, by the standards of 1969, this was a clever application of current design thinking and would have appealed to architects at the time. As good modern baths, they played an important social role not just in Bushbury but throughout the then Borough and surrounding areas. But the world moves faster these days and the Bushbury Swimming Baths look as if they will soon be history. They have now been closed for some months and a new report (June 2001) suggests that more than £800,000 would have to be spent to put them back in order. That is not too much less than building new baths.