The People's Pool / by Simon Mooney

Back in June I was asked to photograph a site visit to east London’s Haggerston Baths. An architect friend wanted pictures for a proposal to Hackney Council on the future of the building.

The baths were closed by the local authority in 2000, after almost a century of public service and it has now invited ‘expressions of interest’ to develop the site. My friend’s group is proposing a community-based alternative to the predictable commercial schemes.

We spent an hour on a guided tour of the place and I used the time to take these pictures. Years of neglect have left obvious damage which some visitors have sadly made worse.

How does such a historic public resource become redundant and fall into such a miserable state? What would the people who designed, built and enjoyed Haggerston Baths think?

Hackney Gazette – Haggerston Baths on the Market