Cold Knap Lido – Barry 1926. It was their pool

Cold Knap Lido -i mage

Aerial view The KnapCold Knap Lido Courtesy of Vale of Glamorgan Library Services.  Original Wooden changing cubicles above.

Cold Knap Lido was built as a tidal pool. It was a hive of activity during the 50s.

Cold Knap lido saw high numbers of people crowd the pool daily on Bank Holiday weekends.  It was patronised in abundance daily during the school holidays. The people of Barry considered it to be THEIR pool…

The Lido was opened on May 1st 1926.  It was an ingenious feat being built voluntarily by a number of unemployed citizens.  A Lido to be proud of and certainly a monument to remain in permanent history.

It was not a small lido.  It was one of the largest lidos in Britain at the time.  The Lido boasted dimensions being of 120 yards x 60 yards.  It was  a simple design in it’s early years originally flanked by wooden changing box’s prior 1937 and not as you see in these pictures from the Royal Commission – concrete and semi circular.

Cold Knap Lido Changing cubicles - image

More recent changing room style of the 2000s. The concrete passageway. Courtesy of Vale of Glamorgan Library Services

The original boxes ran alongside the western edge of the lido close to a boating lake. In time a children’s paddling pool was added and the lido enjoyed its heyday in the 1950s.


 Cold Knap Lido site:arrowed - image

The Site of the Cold Knap Lido

OUTCOME:    Cold Knap Lido suffered the same fate of many Lidos by the time of the 1980s.  Patronage dwindled,  favouring the rush to the mediterranean sun enabled by cheap package holidays.

Also around this era, domestic central heating became a common factor in housing and the unheated pools couldn’t compete with the slow loss of hardiness that patrons once had!

The Lido closed in 1996 already falling into decline.  There was much local opposition,  but the demolition of the buildings began in March 2004 and the lido was infilled.  It was respectfully landscaped with the outline of the lido imprinted into the lay out.

A Spark of Hope

Campaigners are fighting for this iconic South Wales open-air swimming pool to be rebuilt


Cold Knap Bathing Pool - image

Before the grand scale of the Cold Knap Lido!  Friars Point House in the distance?  enlarge+


 Cold Knap forerunner - image

? The Forerunner of the Cold Knap Lido +


A return link to more pools