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Restoration

Gill Wright

We are desperately sad to announce the death of our friend and former colleague Gill Wright. Gill died peacefully on Wednesday morning 3rd March 2021 after a short illness with cancer. We will miss her so very much.

Gill was instrumental in the restoration and development of Victoria Baths for over twenty years, first as a volunteer, then as an employee. Passion and dedication barely describe Gill’s commitment to the cause of this beautiful building and the history and people it represents. She was involved in every aspect of the project, from fundraising to managing restoration and building projects, establishing the History Group, archiving, supporting the arts programme and leading tours of the building. Quiet and modest, Gill never sought attention, but she truly deserved her place in the “Top 50 Great Northerners” list in 2018.

Gill also championed the cause of other historic swimming pools and lidos through her work with Historic Pools of Britain, knowing what precious and beautiful community assets they are. 

There is so much more to say in tribute to Gill and in due course we will mark our collective sorrow and our memories of the leading contribution she made. But for now, we simply want to send our deepest condolences to Gill’s family and friends.

All the team at Victoria Baths

 

Victoria Baths Today

Victoria Baths has been partially restored, thanks to £5m in total which has been raised from a number of sources, by far the biggest being a grant from the National Lottery Heritage Fund as a result of us winning the BBC's Restoration programme in 2003.

The building operates as an events space and heritage attraction with 30,000 visitors each year coming for beer festivals, art exhibitions, music events, vintage fairs, cinema nights and much more.  

See Our Story for the major restoration work we have completed since 2002. Images here show more recent work, restoring our beautiful stained glass windows.

 

 

 
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Frequently Asked Questions

  • Can I swim at Victoria Baths?

    It is not possible to swim at Victoria Baths now, but it is the aim of the Trust to fully restore the building and bring at least one swimming pool back into public use.
  • When will the baths re-open as a functional public pool?

    We can't yet be sure of the timescale for re-opening the pool. It is a huge challenge, not simply because of the large amount of capital required to restore the pool to working order but also because an operating pool will almost certainly require ongoing public subsidy.
  • Where is Victoria Baths?

    Victoria Baths is on Hathersage Road which is a couple of miles south of Mancheser City Centre in an area called Chorlton-on-Medlock. It is in the ward of Ardwick but also close to Longsight and to Rusholme, famous for its Curry Mile. Manchester Royal Infirmary is nearby and the Universities quite close too.
  • Can I hire Victoria Baths for an event?

    Yes, it is quite possible to hire Victoria Baths. Check out our Venue Hire pages for more information
  • When did the baths close?

    Victoria Baths closed on 13th March 1993. It was boarded up and little was done to the building for a number of years though the Friends ensured the building wasn't totally neglected or forgotten. Every year there was at least one open day and the Friends carried out lots of clearing and cleaning work long before actual restoration work was carried out.
  • When is Victoria Baths open?

    Public events at Victoria Baths take place from April to October each year with the last Open Day being the first Sunday in November. The building is unheated so it is not practical to hold public events in the colder months though we still faciltiate some private hires then.
  • How has the restoration been funded?

    There has been over £5m spent on the restoration of Victoria Baths so far. The largest amount - £3m - has come from Heritage Lottery Fund as a result of the Restoration win in 2003. English Heritage have also provided several large grants including the first capital grant for work to the building in 2002. Many other grant giving bodies have made contributions and the public have raised over half a million pounds towards the restoration work too - through the viewer vote on Restoration and by contributions to the Trust's Building Fund.
  • Who owns Victoria Baths

    Victoria Baths is owned by Manchester City Council. It is managed on their behalf by the Victoria Baths Trust.
  • Has Victoria Baths been used for TV filming?

    Yes - Victoria Baths has been used many times for filming TV dramas. Scenes for Cracker and Prime Suspect 5 were filmed here in the 1990's and recent programmes have included Life on Mars, the Antiques Road Show, Floggit, Bedlam, Eric and Ernie and many more....
 

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