About Parkgate > Parkgate Heritage Trail > Old Baths
The Old Baths
The small pool
The small pool shown here was added in about 1930; it was a 50-yard trainer pool. You can just about make out the Boat House Cafe in the distance.
By 1973 the old baths had been filled in and structures demolished, and the site incorporated into the Wirral Country Park.
Much of the land has been laid out as car park for those wanting to start a local walk from this end of the village. Parts of the original walls still remain, however, forming a boundary to the car park and picnic site.
This is a good place for observing the local birdlife. Both the Wirral Country Park and the RSPB have information boards at this location overlooking the marsh. These explain the origins of the park and the wildlife that can be viewed here.
The former Parkgate open air swimming baths were built by Mostyn House School in 1923 for their own use; they were situated beyond the end of the North Parade and supplied with filtered salt water pumped from the Dee Estuary. This first pool was about 100 yards in length (twice as long as a current Olympic pool), and very deep in the vicinity of the high diving board. The pool had a deep and shallow side, as opposed to most pools with their deep and shallow ends.
From an early date the bath was also opened to the general public and both proved extremely popular with visitors during the inter-war years. When war appeared inevitable, they were sold in 1939 to fund the building of a fully equipped underground air raid shelter in the school grounds.
During the war years the water supply and filtration system struggled to cope with the effects of the encroaching marsh. In 1950 the baths were closed, never to re-open.