This month marks the 80th birthday of the swimming pool. It is amazing to think that it opened just before the outbreak of WW II and has played a part in the lives of many people since then who have fond memories of it. The exact date of opening was 23 May 1939 after £7,900 had been raised for building the pool, the buildings and the complete layout.
Originally accessed via poolside close, customers of the lido were greeted by diving boards, a large fountain and the 50m long pool. Throughout the years, changes have taken place to the grounds such as a water flume which splashed willing swimmers directly into the pool.
In 2002, problems around the lining of the pool caused the pool to close; a great loss to the community. In 2009, the takeover by Parkwood Leisure and the investment of funding from both Cherwell District Council, Parkwood and the local community allowed it to reopen. The depth was reduced to 1.8m, diving boards removed, the flume renovated and this gave the local district the pool they deserve.
Now in 2019, 80 years on from the original opening, Woodgreen Lido welcomes 10s of thousands of visitors each year from Banbury and from all around Oxfordshire. The days of cracking the ice to swim back in 1955 is no more, with the pool now fully heated to a pleasant 28 degrees. The pool will be opening earlier this year to give customers longer to enjoy it, and will stay open all the way through until September. Woodgreen Leisure Centre provides an opportunity for local residents, swimming clubs and canoeists to enjoy the pool year after year, and they intend to continue to do this for years to come.