Saturday 24 July 2010

Black Rock Swimming Pool

On a fine summer day the pool, built in 1936 on a raised terrace above the sea, was an idyllic spot with the white cliffs in view to the east, Brighton to the west, seagulls overhead. . . . And it was filled with sea-water which was ozonised, not chlorinated, and so did not sting the eyes. The late art deco building itself, with cafe, sun terrace, ochre-coloured walls, formed an elegant architectural landmark, at the start of the Undercliff walk, in the long progression of the seafront.  There seemed to be a wonderful logic to it all . . How could there not be a pool at Black Rock?

By the 1970s the answer came in the combined effects of a series of bad summers and cheap air-travel and it was demolished in 1978. All that remains are two sets of steps (and a still derelict site). A passageway led from Madeira Drive which passed behind the pool to the Undercliff walk. From this passageway these round-nosed glazed steps gave access to the back of the pool building towards the eastern end:-

At the western end these led from the passageway up to the Madeira Drive pavement:-


  1. I'd love to have a saltwater pool in Brighton. Mind you, if we can't even save Saltdean Lido, what hope is there?

  2. I am a Brighton resident and currently on a world trip. In Australia they have several pools on the sea front some carved out of the rock face, some enclosed and filled from the sea. They know how to do it here. Shame on Brighton council..

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