Words by Emma Edwards
For a wonderful vintage day out this summer, why not visit a Lido, like The Tinside Lido in Plymouth? One of the UK’s finest examples of a restored Art Deco Lido, Tinside has been voted one of the top ten pools in Europe. The grade Il listed building is set overlooking the sea in Plymouth Hoe and celebrated its 80th birthday in 2015.
The Lido originally opened in 1935 at a time when ‘sea bathing’ was moving away from an activity for health to a leisure pursuit and was described as ‘one of the finest open sea bathing centres in the country’. Sadly, Britain’s lidos fell into decline in the decades after World War 2, as increasing numbers of holidaymakers headed abroad for cheap package holidays. After years of neglect, Tinside finally closed in1992. Thankfully it was not closed for too long. Later in the same decade and after much campaigning by local people, Plymouth Council decided that the Lido should form the centrepiece of a restoration project that would return the cliff side Hoe to its 1930s glory. It reopened its doors to the public in 1998 and is now open to the public during the summer months from 28th May to 11th September.
Tinside Lido is a ‘real slice of the quintessential British seaside from a bygone era’ and I thoroughly enjoyed my own visit, taking in the glorious Art Deco surroundings. Harry and his staff were only too pleased to show me around and one of the lifeguards joined me in my enthusiasm, by disrobing from his modern yellow and red lifeguard shorts and t-shirt into a vintage style striped swimsuit complete with straw boater! Of course, it wouldn’t have been right to leave without taking a dip in this historic salt-water pool myself. It was certainly bracing but a wonderful experience that I will definitely be repeating next time I visit Plymouth.
Visit the Tinside Lido website at www.everyoneactive.com