Tuesday, 28 June 2016

Walking to the library

 Down our road round the corner then another corner and you find
an old postbox - not very exciting you might say but it's within a short walk from home and if you've been reading the blog for years you'll remember that where we lived before the postbox got stolen and wasn't replaced leaving us a mile and a bit to go to post a letter.

Past more houses and across  2 roads then along this footpath under the railway. The house on the right has an aviary in the back garden - the noise is dreadful, glad I don't live next to them.
Along another road and between houses and down onto this playing field. It's just a grassy area with a fenced in playground and was soggy wet this morning.

 Spotted blackberries starting to grow on the edge of the field, wonder if there will be any to pick later or will other people get there first.

 Out the other side of the playing field and here we are at our local library.
Quoting from a slightly out of date page on t'internet...........
 " Westbourne (It's now called Broomhill) Library was designed as a decontamination centre to protect the Ipswich public from Nazi chemical warfare - with a post-war transfer of usage to a public library in 1948. It is an extremely popular and well used public library and community hub. With 77,000 visits p.a, it is the 11th busiest of Suffolk’s 44 libraries; and is the only library in north Ipswich.

I'm guessing the figures quoted are way out of date and the library is much quieter now than when this was written.
 I came home avoiding the soggy playing field and passed  perhaps the saddest thing in Ipswich 

 It's the old entrance of Broomhill outdoor swimming pool, too expensive for the council to run it closed several years ago. Every now and again they talk about re-opening it. There are very few public outdoor pools or lidos left anywhere in the country now, very sad, as we spent many happy days at the one in Stowmarket when I was in my mid teens.

And then up and down roads and around corners until I got home again, luckily avoiding the rain showers.

Back Soon


  1. What an interesting history to the library.

  2. What a shame about Broomhill, sad to think that in this day and age there aren't enough folk who want to go for a fresh air swim. In Sussex there is a busy open air pool in Lewes called Pells Pool and also a beautiful Art Deco one in Saltdean that has just been given funding to save it.

  3. I love the thought of an outdoor swimming pool. Just imagine swimming in the rain.
    Such a shame that Broomhill is closed. There used to be one in little town near us but I think that is long gone too-x-

  4. Lovely looking library and shame about the swimming pool.

  5. What a shame about the outdoor pool. You'd think someone would come up with a plan to rent it off the council and turn it into a going concern.

    Your library is a lot bigger than ours!

  6. Its great that although living in a very large town its still has lots of rural looks about it. Same about the lido.

  7. Interesting walk. Our outdoor pool was turned initially into a 5 a side football and basket ball court, now has a skate park on the site too. Was a very popular place back in the day, closed in 70s I think, before I arrived in town.

  8. Thank you for sharing your walk to the library and I hope you manage to get some of the blackberries.

    Sad photo of Broomhill Outdoor Swimming Pool where I went for swimming lessons with my school. It was a lot of fun. The article in the Ipswich Evening Star on 12 October 2015 was very positive and the headline "Broomhill lido in Ipswich set to open at Easter 2018" encouraging - sorry to hear that will probably not be the case.

    All the best from across the big pond.

  9. We used to have two outdoor swimming pools in our town. The big well known one which had high diving boards and hosted 'beauty' contests in the sixties and seventies. Then there was the other pool, which wasn't known of by visitors, so was full of locals every day.
    Both pools closed for the winter, but were open from before Easter until the end of October every year.
    They were both very well used, but the council didn't want to pay for their upkeep (willing to take the money the pools made though) and they were both closed in the early eighties.
    One of the sites is a Morrison's supermarket now and the smaller one is a 'Harvester' pub!
    Oh, and most of our libraries are now only open for eighteen hours per week, with no evenings or Saturday afternoons....it disgusts me!

  10. love it! I love getting to see somewhere I know well through your eyes.

    Ah, Broomhill. Spent so many happy summer hols there, it was always a real treat to meet friends up there. Used to be such a crowd to get in. How things change. I wish they'd reopen, I'd love Violet to experience it, but I can only see problems with it now if they did. Suspect it's a matter of time before they declare it needs to be knocked down. That will really make me sad. You know I don't like to lose buildings that give me happy memories!

    Thanks for your comment. Nope. I'm not clever at all. Took me ages to work out how to answer the stupid thing when Bill called me today. Felt such a fool! ;o) xx

  11. Good news about the neighbours.
    And, glad you are now much nearer a postbox than you were. I have a choice of two, in opposite directions, each a 3 or 4 minute walk, which is handy. But, where I lived before, I was only two houses away from one!
    Do wish they had kept the two collections a day though.
    Bring back the good old days!

  12. Looks like a nice area for you to explore. Your building reminds me of the same style buildings in my home town left over from the war - especially the de-contamination hut (returning soldiers and refugees were de-loused) which in the 1950/60s was where my mother went to pay her council house rent in cash each week! Blackberries are flowering well this year.

  13. I enjoyed the history of the library. I don't think you need to worry about other people picking the blackberries if it is like the town I live in. Berries, apples and plums abound but rarely see anybody apart from me picking.

  14. Lovely walk! It would be nice if the swimming pool could be restored and reopened wouldn't it.

  15. Has the Library building got a preservation order on it, I wonder? Not many libraries look like that or have such a history, do they?
    Margaret P

  16. Enjoyed going on the walk with you, such a shame about the lido. It would be so good if a way could be found to open it again.
    Lisa x