On 10th August 1875, the organisation was reinstated under the name of Tynemouth Amateur Swimming Club and has since undergone a long tradition of promoting swimming in the area.
The Founder Member was a Mr John William Moore, who owned a printing works in Charlotte Street, North Shields. He was a keen swimmer who taught many thousands of people how to swim.
In 1888, the club had a purpose built ‘Bathing House’, which was erected on the South Slope of Tynemouth Pier and was used for a number of years until it was washed away during a gale in the Spring of 1915.
In 1907, the club applied to the local council to use a small open air, salt water reservoir situated in Hawkey’s Lane, for which permission was granted. The reservoir, however, was small and measured only 60 foot square at a depth of just 5 feet, with sloping sides. Although once very popular, it was inadequate to sustain a large numbers of swimmers.
Additional land was therefore secured, and on 30th June 1909, a brand new, purpose built, open air salt water swimming bath was opened on the same site. Extended to a size of 100 foot long by 40 foot wide, the management of the baths was handed over to the club, under a body of trustees. The new bath included covered stands capable of accommodating up to 600 spectators.
As a result, the popularity of the club soon increased and once had a total membership of 1,358. The salt water was replaced with a fresh water supply in 1946.
In 1971 the club moved from the outdoor baths to its present site at Tynemouth Indoor Pool, and continues its long tradition of providing swimming excellence for many people of the local area.
With grateful thanks to Tynemouth Amateur Swimming Club. More details are available here where there is also some rare footage of a swimming gala held in 1901 just off Tynemouth North Pier.
by Charlie Steel © 2014
His published books include ‘Monkseaton Village’ Vols 1 & 2, and ‘North Shields Public Houses, Inns & Taverns’ Parts 1 & 2, all of which are available from most local booksellers.