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Exciting plans revealed for Grange Lido’s revival

Grange Lido © StudioOctopi

The iconic Grange Lido could soon be back open for business with a 50m six lane pool, a heated 25m pool alongside a paddling and play pool. The complex would also boast a community space, restaurant, sauna, steam room and shop.

The plans have been commissioned by Save Grange Lido who have been presenting proposals to South Lakeland District Council which will see the group raise funds to restore the grade II listed facility and operate the site as a not for profit community venture.

Studio Octopi have produced the plans and were chosen because they have a wealth of experience in swimming pool design. The architects are currently working on a floating swimming pool for the River Thames and restoring a lost Lido in south east London.

Chris Romer-Lee, Director of Studio Octopi and Thames Baths CIC said: “Grange Lido is one of the most important surviving coastal lidos in the UK and to work on such a socially and architecturally significant structure is an honour. Grange Lido has three existing elegant pavilions plus the iconic pool and restoration requires architectural sensitivity but also a sharp eye on the business plan. With 2019 being the Year of the Lido, there is something special happening across the country in reawakening these forgotten water palaces. The team look forward to continuing to work with the motivated and skilled community group on unlocking the future of Grange Lido.”

It is proving to be a big week for SGL who have now been officially incorporated as a Community Benefit Society ‘Save Grange Lido Limited’.

The group plan to raise the funds to renovate the pool, which closed in 1993, alongside the SLDC’s current scheme to repair the buildings.

SGL will presenting their case to the Council’s Cabinet at 10am on the 23rd January, the Cabinet will make recommendations to the Full Council. In these meetings key decisions will be made for the future of the Lido.

SGL Director and Company Secretary David Dawson says: “We started off as a group of concerned residents, enthusiastic about saving and restoring this iconic pool and now, incorporated as SGL, we hope to persuade the Council to approve our plans for the pool. We would then be well placed to work with SLDC to help restore the derelict Lido, as community facility and world-class visitor attraction, to make the people of Grange proud.”

SGL were recently awarded a matched funding grant of £6265 by the Architectural Heritage Fund to progress its plans. AHF is part funded by Historic England which is the official body responsible for the country’s historic buildings.

The group are working closely with Wrightfield Pools who are experts in pool restoration and restored the hugely successful Lido Ponty in Wales. They have estimated the cost of the pool restoration and new plant at £1.2m.

18,000 people signed petitions calling on South Lakeland District Council to include swimming when they restore the historic Lido on the promenade at Grange-over-sands.

Save Grange Lido plan to raise funds for the renovation of the grade II listed pool and operate the facility without the need for council subsidy.

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