Bringing Bathing Back: Restoration of The Ladywell Baths

We were really excited to hear about the plans to restore and re-use the fantastic Ladywell Old Baths (aka "The Playtower") just around the corner from us in Lewisham.

Ladywell blogspot reports that Lewisham Council has received a number of "exciting proposals" for the building and formal Expressions of Interest will be sought in the new few weeks.

According to, the red-brick gothic building dates back to 1884 and now has Grade II-listed status. Its original purpose was for bathing, with one pool for "first class" users and one for "second class" users. The tower is now sadly hat-less after its conical roof was an air-raid casualty of WW2. 

Image courtesy of  @ LewishamBPT

Image courtesy of @LewishamBPT

This is a wonderful, important and historic building for our borough: and one of the earliest surviving public baths in the capital. Designed by Wilson & Son and Thomas Aldwinkle (the latter a local architect who designed several notable bath houses). Hobbs of Croydon built it for £9,000 on a site procured by the vicar of the adjacent St Mary's Church. (Source: Historic England)

We can't wait to see what development proposals are submitted and we hope for a sympathetic yet contemporary twist on this majestic structure; bringing the site back to life for our community (of all classes!).

Kim Spooner