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#BRISTAN BULLETIN: The Role of Specification in the Revival of the Public Swimming Pool

This Summer the V&A + RIBA Architect Partnership is hosting an exhibition that looks at the significant role public swimming pools and lidos play within the community. With the current regeneration of historic pools, such as the 200-year-old Cleveland Pools in Bath, Bristan considers what the future holds for this type of leisure facility and how the latest technology and products can help to future proof their use for years to come.

Historically, public pools were built because authorities were concerned about the health of the working classes who, in the 19th Century, had very poor provision for exercise. Over the last 100 years, these facilities have struggled to remain a priority for councils faced with rising energy bills and increased costs for pool maintenance. However, more recently, with a renewed focus on health and wellbeing, the public pool is enjoying a resurgence.

Sports England states that “building services for new public swimming pools should be suitable for the demanding internal environment”, and so to enable councils to support the regeneration of the community swimming pool, the facilities must deliver on both performance and design. We know that showering facilities within leisure centres and swimming pools are used by numerous of people throughout a single day. Because of this, they must be durable, easy to control and easy to maintain. Not only that, public showers will be used by a diverse range of people, from young children to older visitors. The showering facilities therefore need to be hard wearing, include safety features and provided functions that support water efficiency.

Bristan’s range of commercial showers have been designed to meet these specific challenges. Ideal for group applications, all our showers are made from high grade brass, including metal back nuts and ceramic cartridges to ensure longevity and optimum performance. The chrome plated finish, standard across most of the range, is hard wearing and corrosion resistant and the stainless-steel finish of our shower panels is one of the most robust in the marketplace.
Our shower panel range has no visible working parts and is designed to fit right to the ceiling, leaving no exposed pipework to reduce the risk of damage due to heavy use. To help keep energy costs down, shower installations with timed flow controls are ideal for environments with mass usage. Controlling the flow of water not only offers water saving benefits but ensures that the showers cannot be left running and cause flooding or water damage.

In an environment that is frequently used by members of the public, safety is paramount. To avoid serious injury from scalding, for this type of setting, it is best practice to choose a shower with a Thermostatic Mixing Valve. Bristan has one of the largest selections of TMV3 blending valves in the industry, which comply with DoH estates requirements, DO8 and BS7942 standards, suitable for use in places where there are young children and the elderly.

By choosing efficient and safe products, professional specifiers have an opportunity to make a real difference in the regeneration of the community swimming pool - not only for the council who will be able to better manage and maintain the facility, but for whole communities.
To find out more about our range of commercial showers, please speak to your local Specification Manager.
Infrared pamel

Infrared panel in a leisure environment

As RIBA announces a new exhibition exploring the architectural, cultural and social importance of the public swimming pool, we look at how the recent revival of this important community facility can be supported through the specification of quality products.