AN ICONIC LEGACY
Warrenpoint Baths was once an iconic marvel of architecture, innovation and lesisure proudly sitting on the shores of Carlingford Lough at Warrenpoint.
It remains in place today, a reminder of the seaside fun and games that seen thousands of people visit Warrenpoint.
It is now a shadow of it’s former glory and the subject of much local debate as to it’s future.
When was it opened
Warrenpoint Baths was opened in 1908.
Warrenpoint Baths was an open air saltwater baths.
The initial design had a separate swimming pool for both ladies and gentlemen.
The division between the two decks could be removed to use the whole pool as one.
The opening of the Baths was described on as a “red letter day in the history of Warrenpoint“
“Nature had done everything for them and they themselves had done little” one diginatary commented on the opening of Warrenpoint Baths
Then & Now
Warrenpoint Baths Today
There has been much talk in recent years about what should be done about Warrenpoint Baths.
It has been allowed to fall into very bad disrepair despite many local volunteer initiatives over the years to preserve the Baths and it’s legacy.
Despite many rounds of planning applications and consultations, we do not appear to be any closer to securing a path forward for the Warrenpoint Bath and the site it inhabits.
The most recent activity surrounding the Baths has been a Newry, Mourne and Down District Council initiative.
The Council had secured planning permission for a mixed-use development on site and wanted to explore an ambitious regeneration project for the location.
Slowly but surely, the natural forces of Carlingford Lough’s waters are eroding the once majestic structure.
That is sad to witness especially when we know of it’s rich history, iconic status and centre of so much seaside fun over the years.
In 2015, Warrenpoint Baths proposals were displayed – see the video below!
BBC Newsline Feature
on Warrenpoint Baths
With the message to holiday at home this year, many of us will be revisiting or discovering places right on our doorstep. Before the dawn of international holidays the County Down town of Warrenpoint was a very popular destinations and as our South East reporter Cormac Campbell has been finding out, the town is hoping to lean on that history to reinvigorate itself.Posted by BBC Newsline on Thursday, July 23, 2020
Cormac Campbell, reporter from the BBC Northern Ireland , featured the Warrenpoint Baths in a BBC report in 2020.
With the Covid Pandemic and staycation’s at home being encouraged for all, the focus on Warrenpont Baths and it’s restoration has become a local talking point again.
The opening of The Baths in Warrenpoint
Captain Hall’s wife laid the foundation stone for Warrenpoint Baths in August of 1906.
The event was marked by a Gala celebration.
The spot on which the Baths was opened was described so eloquently in a newspaper report:
“it’s beauties are ever available; and to the seeker after health, it’s bracing yet mild and salubrious breezes come with healing balm”
The Hall family were honoured in local newspapers for the recent donation of the ground for Warrenpoint Municipal Park.
Interestingly, the Chairman of the Urban Council addressed the criticism the local authority had received welcoming this new era:
“They had often been reproached for not having done anything to provide bathing facilities for visitors in Summer Months”
They believed that the opening of the Baths addressed people’s concerns.
It’s ironic that over 100 years later, we are still having the same debate and discussion about precisely the same spot!
Warrenpoint Baths: Gala Fun
Over the years, Warrenpoint Baths has been the centre of much fun.
In 1908, it played host to the provincial water polo match between Ulster and Munster.
Swimming Gala’s were held in the Baths every summer.
In 1910, the 220 yard Swimming Championship of Ireland was held in Warrenpoint
Warrenoint Holiday Town
Warrenpoint was a major holiday town and tourist attraction with 1000’s of visitor arriving into Warrenpoint on the weekend’s over the summer months.
Warrenpoint Baths in Picture
Batters the Baths
“They had often been reproached for not having done anything to provide bathing facilities for visitors in Summer Months” You will never believe how long this is being said 👉 www.visitwarrenpoint.com/warrenpointbaths/Posted by What's The Point? on Thursday, April 15, 2021
Baths Sunrise Lough Histor
Before the Baths were built
In the picture above, we can see Warrenpoint’s shoreline before the Baths were built.
In contrast with a more recent picture of the same location!
Warrenpoint Baths has been the base for watersports activities on Carlingford Lough in recent years.
Warrenpoint Baths: A Starring Role
Warrenpoint in Neil Jordan’s Butcher Boy
Warrenpoint was transformed into a 1950’s Bundoran as the location set of the movie, The Butcher Boy.
The Butcher Boy movie was an adaption of the book written by Patrick McCabe.
The Butcher Boy is a black comedy about a young boy by the name of Francie Brady who has had a pretty rough childhood and follows his descent into serious mental illness with horrific consequences.
Francie takes a trip to Bundoran to see where his parent’s went on their honeymoon.
Warrenpoint plays the part of Bundoran and Warrenpoint Baths was the focal point of the filming of the scenes that appeared in the movie.
Neil Jordan won an Oscar in 1992 for his movie the Crying Game – He won an Academy Award (Best Original Screenplay).
Neil Jordan wrote and directed the movie Michal Collins starring Liam Neeson.
He also directed the movie Interview with a Vampire starring Tom Cruise and Brad Pitt
Did you know that Warrenpoint Baths played a starring role in a movie directed by an Oscar winner? Warrenpoint transformed into Bundoran 👉 www.visitwarrenpoint.com/warrenpointbaths Lots of locals were cast as extras in the movie - The Butcher Boy - Did you play a part?Posted by What's The Point? on Friday, 16 April 2021
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