Beach Paddling Pool - Penarth

Left click a postcard image to enlarge it.  
  This image was produced c.1933 and shows the location of the paddling pool.
Photochrom. Co., Ltd., Royal Tunbridge Wells (postmarked 1958)  

The Council first planned to create a paddling pool on the beach in 1908. The Earl of Plymouth agreed to its construction subject to a nominal rent of 5/- per annum, and the Council sought permission from the Local Government Board to borrow £220 for the building work.[1] This was declined because the Local Government Board considered that the Council did not have the power to borrow money for this purpose.[2] No further progress was made until July 1912 when Mr John Kyte Collett wrote to the Council offering to construct "a children's bathing pond" on the beach and his offer was accepted.[3]

It was a further two years before the paddling pool was actually built. In June 1914 the Surveyor submitted a plan and the Public Works Committee decided that the work should go ahead.[4] The paddling pool was placed on the foreshore to the north of the pier, towards Penarth Head, as can be seen in one of the postcards showing a southerly view from Penarth Head Park.

The Penarth Times of September 1930 reported the pool as being "...half full of stones and mud, much of the latter being a black and slimy nature..."[5] Its condition continued to cause concern and gave rise during the 1950s to discussion of alternative sites for a new paddling pool. One proposal was to include a paddling pool at Cliff Green. The Council decided on the Cogan Recreation Ground but eventually abandoned the plan as too expensive.[6]

By early 1966 the paddling pool was said to be in a "deplorable state" and Councillor Krieger declared that "broken bottles and stones thrown in by children make it more of menace than an amenity".[7] At the April 1966 meeting of the Pier and Esplanade Committee it was agreed that use of the paddling pool should be discontinued and the Surveyor was instructed to arrange for its demolition.[8]

Sources of information

  1. Meeting of the Council 6th January 1908
  2. Meeting of the Council 6th May 1908
  3. Meeting of the Council 3rd July 1912
  4. Meeting of the Public Works Committee 29th June 1914
  5. Penarth Times 4th September 1930 page 3
  6. Meeting of the Parks and Allotments Committee 14th October 1968
  7. Penarth Times 7th April 1966
  8. Meeting of the Pier and Esplanade Committee 18th April 1966