PHOTOGRAPHED 30 AUGUST 2022
The Blackrock baths were provided for by the railway company in 1839 and were built beside the Blackrock train station. A special train ticket also permitted entrance to the baths. In 1887, the baths were rebuilt in concrete with a large gentlemen’s bath and a smaller ladies’ bath. In 1928, the Urban District Council bought the baths for £2,000 and readied them for the Tailteann Games. The baths, with a 50-metre pool, were well known for their swimming galas and water polo and could accommodate up to 1,000 spectators.”
Eddie Heron lived in Sandycove and is known for his achievement as 36 years undefeated Springboard and Highboard Diving Champion of Ireland. A plaque commemorating him is on the railway bridge that crosses over to the baths.
On 11 September 1891, Thomas Crean, while swimming with fellow students near Blackrock, helped rescue a 21-year-old art student named William Ahern. Crean noticed that Ahern was in trouble and together with a young solicitor named Leachman from Dundrum, he managed to bring him ashore. For his bravery, he was awarded a medal by the Royal Humane Society.
The decline in the use of the baths started in the 1960s when indoor heated swimming pools started to appear. Dún Laoghaire Corporation closed the Blackrock Baths in the late 1980s and by 1992, due to lack of maintenance, parts of the baths were dismantled.[ They have since been sold to developers Treasury Holdings. In 2013, the baths were demolished due to safety concerns following a routine inspection by Dún Laoghaire–Rathdown County Council. It was found that the diving platform had been significantly corroded and detached from the pool base.