Tuesday, 11 December 2012

After nearly six years of campaigning I am delighted to tell you that the last stage of the refurbishment of Camberwell Baths is now complete. Following the opening of the pool and the gym in 2011, the final three areas which will open to the public on 7 January 2013 are the Warwick Hall, the Jubilee Hall ( formerly the Sports Hall) and the Camberwell Youth Centre ( see below) With your marching, petitioning, letter writing and general bloody mindedness, you all played critical roles in this legacy project with helping the community to access the Free Swimming Capital Modernisation Fund, and the Olympic Legacy Fund. This enabled us to access matching capital funds from Southwark Council, and to make the whole project both cost efficient and achievable. It has already been an enormous success, with 22,000 users every month even without the additional three spaces. The two refurbished halls will mean that Camberwell Baths will have the largest communal activity space in Southwark. It will be a multi use space, and we are hoping that the first Camberwell Free Film Festival will have a showing in the Jubilee Hall in March. We are particularly excited about the new Youth Centre, and the Youth Leader, PK, who will be joining us from the Damilola Taylor Centre in Peckham. The three new spaces are: Jubilee Hall – This 600 sqm hall has had an entire makeover including a new glazed roof light, audio visual system and air conditioning. A huge amount of space has been created by raising the floor to one level; this means the space can now be used for sports, exercise classes and much more. Warwick Hall – Named after Alderman Alfred Charles Warwick, the 200 sqm hall has been transformed. The old ceiling was removed to expose the beautiful Victorian roof structure allowing classes to enjoy lots of natural daylight. The hall also has a new sprung floor, sound system, improved ventilation and air conditioning, and acoustic improvements to reduce noise breakout from the space. Camberwell Youth Centre – Specially aimed at 13 to 19 year olds, our youth centre is quite different from the other youth clubs in the borough in that it will offer creative sessions that can be booked in advance. When the programme begins in January our team of youth workers will be on hand to encourage young minds to get involved in making music, creative art, and get advice and guidance on fitness and healthy living, training, jobs and work experience. A programme of activities and opening times for the Camberwell Youth Centre will be available in the New Year.

Tuesday, 30 October 2012

Some updates on developments: Camberwell Youth Centre (CYC) The CYC is new to the leisure centre and is an area which has been entirely refurbished and dedicated for use by children and young people. A draft programme of activity is being planned and from today young people aged eight to 21 can take part in a short survey to tell Southwark what they want from the youth centre. They will then plan to incorporate some of the popular suggestions into the programme. Just click on this link and let Southwark@s Youth team know what you want https://forms.southwark.gov.uk/ShowForm.asp?fm_fid=840 The specific aim for the youth centre is to provide a safe, fun and welcoming environment creating learning opportunities and activities. CYC is not intended to be another venue to play football or just hang out, they will be providing a creative atmosphere for young minds to get involved in making music, creative art, and get advice and guidance on fitness and healthy living, training, jobs and work experience. The youth centre will provide varied and inventive, entertaining and educational workshops run by qualified youth workers and guest presenters with all activities fully supervised by the youth team. Sports Hall A new corridor from dry changing along the end of the sports hall and into the gym is now complete and self contained which means that when the sports hall is occupied its users won’t be distracted by customers visiting the gym. There are windows so customers could take a look at the activities going on in the sports hall. When you visit the centre you’ll see that the floor has been raised to enable the space to be a home for sports, exercise classes and a whole range of creative uses. Reflecting on the history of this beautiful Grade II Listed Building the team at Camberwell have been inspired to prepare an initial creative programme to include different types of dance for all ages and various times of the day. Warwick Hall In addition to the ceiling, the sensitively restored 200 square metre area will also have a new sprung floor, sound system, improved ventilation and air conditioning, and acoustic improvements to reduce noise breakout from the space. The exercise programme is expected to be published in December. Outside the centre Messrs Spalding and Cross (original architects and builders of Camberwell Baths) would be as proud as we are with the renovation work of the front of the building. Where required, window sashes have been replaced, the brick work repaired, cleaned and redecorated and we have even got the clock working again.

Thursday, 4 October 2012

I hope that you have noticed that the clock on Camberwell Baths is now working again after many years. We now have over 20,000 people using Camberwell Baths, which compares with 30,000 at Dulwich Baths. Once the new Sports Hall, Warwick Hall and Youth Centre open in January then we hope that even more people will be able to use the fantastic facilities. The contractors are on schedule, and due to complete their work on about 10 December and hand over to Fusion on that date. Now that the handover date is clear, Southwark Youth Services Team, led by PK, have been planning activity programmes for the Youth Centre for the New Year.

Thursday, 26 July 2012

Sports Hall and Warwick Hall Construction work will start on Monday 30 July, and work will be complete in December 2012. Unfortunately, this means that the opening of the Youth Centre will not happen in October as originally planned. Front of the building The brick work was in a much poorer state than anyone had anticipated so the work has been extended by a few weeks. The Clock The clock mechanism is being replaced, and so we will have a working clock very soon. We have found the original Victorian clock mechanism there, so let me know if you are an expert!

Wednesday, 16 May 2012

Youth Annexe at the Baths

Young adults’ club programme It has not been possible to open the Youth Annexe at the Baths because of ongoing work to the Olympic Hall and the Warwick Hall. However, we are hoping that it will be open in October, and there will be a seven-day programme of activities each week. The youth services team is busy working on a supervised programme of events for all local young people to become involved in. In September, the final touches will be made to the new youth annexe opening for young adults from eleven up to 25 year olds (core group from 13 to 19 years). Provisions have been made for direct access from Harvey Road, with use of multipurpose workshop areas, a cafe and breakout area and quick access through to the sports hall and Warwick Hall to bring young people and leisure activity closer together. There will be a range of opportunities on offer for young people including open access youth projects and specialist services such as volunteering and information, advice and guidance available. We will also be working closely with Fusion to develop opportunities for access to the leisure centre.

Tuesday, 15 May 2012

May news

Don't be alarmed when you see scaffolding going up outside CamberwellBaths. It's‘face-lift’. Funds have been secured to enable the front of the building to be repaired, cleaned and redecorated. The window sashes will be inspected and replaced where required, as will any broken windows. The best news of all is that the clock is to be inspected to see if we can get it working again. The scaffolding will be in place for approximately two months and the Baths will be open as usual. Olympic Hall and Warwick Hall During July construction is expected to start on redeveloping the sports hall ( Olympic) and Warwick Hall. The sports hall will have a new glazed roof light, audio visual system and will be air conditioned. As soon as we have the new floor plan to share with you it will be displayed in the cafe along with the list of games which could be played when the hall floor is levelled. Warwick Hall is also being transformed. The old ceiling is being removed to expose the beautiful Victorian roof structure allowing the classes to enjoy lots of natural daylight. The old floor is being replaced with a new sprung sports floor and the studio will be air conditioned. The area will also have improved acoustic treatment and a full audio visual system.

Thursday, 24 November 2011

Look how far we have come

When sorting through my archives recently I came across these plans from a company of architects. They show how the refurbishment of the pool would have been achieved through the redevelopment of the area at the back of the Baths. So we would have had no 30 station gym, no youth centre, no Warwick Hall and no Olympic (Sports) Hall.

Makes you think doesn't it?