Picture Past: November 28, 1969: 'Suicidal' not to have new pool on seafront
PUBLISHED: 15:56 30 November 2019
Councillors held an in-depth discussion on where best to build a swimming pool in Weston in November 1969.
Weston Borough Council had plans to spend £300,000 on a new pool in Winterstoke Road, but the scheme did not have total backing of members.
Cllr W E Roe suggested it would be 'suicidal' not to build the second pool on Weston seafront - a sentiment that 50 years on is still shared in some quarters.
Cllr V Goold was one of the members to put forward the Knightstone Theatre complex as an alternative.
He said: "There isn't a better site than Knightstone Island and it should be borne in mind that Knightstone Theatre has been run at quite a loss for years.
"It's only used for six months of the year anyway."
However, there was some support for an out-of-town pool.
Cllr J R Blizzard said 80 per cent of users of the Knightstone Baths were locals and it made sense, with the town growing, that a location away from the seafront for a new pool was seriously considered.
* Swimming was not the only sport to make the front page of the Mercury.
It was revealed that consideration was given to having a speedway team in Weston.
Cllr Maurice Watts said: "The rugby club is quite isolated so there should not be any disturbance on account of noise.
"I understand club officials have visited speedway tracks in other parts of the country and they envisage a track laid in the cinders so that it could be used as an athletics track (too)."
* Hundreds of teachers went on strike over an unsatisfactory pay rise offer, but arguably the biggest education story of the week was in Highbridge.
One teacher and 11 pupils of Highbridge Infants School were taken to hospital in Burnham after fainting.
The fumes from a coke store caused a dozen people to fall ill and the school was quickly trying to find another heating system.
* And a business in Highbridge was hugely affected by a fire.
An estimated £15,000 of damage was caused in an early-morning blaze at Woodberry Brooks & Haines Ltd, in Springfield Road.
It was the third fire in a year-and-a-half to affect the firm. The previous two had cost the company about £21,500.
Police had not ruled out arson as the cause of the fire.