About Cirencester Open Air Swimming Pool


Cirencester Open Air Swimming Pool was originally opened in 1869. The running of the pool was taken over by the local council in 1908

In 1972 the Council built the indoor swimming pool, proposing to close the outdoor pool. Substantial opposition culminated in the Council handing the outdoor pool over to the ‘Open Air Swimming Association’ for a peppercorn rent. See images below of the petition to save the Pool

A formidable group of volunteers somehow ensured the continuing operation of the pool and developed a more structured organisation that we see today. 

Since 1973, dedicated volunteers have taken responsibility for organising day-to-day operations during the summer, and maintenance and fundraising during the winter. The only paid staff are the seasonal lifeguards and any specialist service providers needed for the maintenance of the pool.

The pool relies entirely on the generous time and support given by our volunteers who together with donors and sponsors maintain and develop the pool's facilities.

Charitable Objectives

As a registered charity, we have a number of charitable objectives:

(i) To maintain and improve the Cirencester Open Air Swimming Pool for the benefit of the local community and the wider public.
(ii) The promotion of good physical and mental health for the benefit of the local community and the wider public
(iii) To promote water safety principles.
(iv) To protect the site and the original function of Cirencester Open Air Swimming Pool as part of local and national heritage

To meet our charitable objectives, we look to generate income from pool events during the summer season together with other fundraising activities as well as public and private donations. You can make donations to one of our fundraising initiatives via our Fundraising Page


Current Trustees
  • Jennifer Hale - Chair
  • Paul Jenkins - Treasurer
  • Michael Athienites
  • Shirley Bond - Volunteer Coordination
  • Jackie Harrison
  • Catherine Maggs
  • Georgia Mercier
  • Sally Plowman
  • David Wright - Pool & Buildings Management

Pool Development

From the time that pool was taken over by the charitable trust, the volunteers and trustees have always looked to the future both in the maintenance of the fabric of the pool and to make improvements for future generations.

Pool Upgrade 2016-2018

Our historic site, built in 1869, left a need for periodic mechanical and structural improvements. Thanks to major funding from the Winstone Charitable Trust, COASP embarked upon a visionary upgrade project of the pool site in 2016 for the benefit of residents and visitors to Cirencester

The improvements

  • The old office and storage buildings were demolished and a new main building constructed, providing new changing rooms with disabled facilities, new toilets and showers, a meeting/function room and new office. The plant room, new chemical stores and workshop were also included in the new building. This major cost was covered by The Winstone Charitable Trust.
  • New pool covers were installed helping to reduce costs in heating the pool. New fencing alongside Riverside Walk was built incorporating the storage of pool covers. Half of this cost was provided by St. James’s Place.
  • Improved wheelchair access to the rear gate with new ramp and handrail, the costs of which were provided by Gloucestershire Environmental Trust (G.E.T.)
  • An extra entrance and exit with turnstile built to help manage the flow of visitors on busy days, arriving and leaving the pool site.
  • New patio to Riverside Walk side of pool laid.
  • A designated reception area and desk were built with costs covered by the Gannett Foundation
  • Fixings and connections are in place to enable us to install solar panels in future with the cost covered by G.E.T.

We are very grateful to the following grant funders who made these improvements possible:

The Winstone Charitable Trust
St. James’s Place
Gloucestershire Environmental Trust
Gannett Foundation


In 2022 we successfully we undertook a successful fundraising campaign to raise sufficient funds to install Solar panels which will go towards reducing our energy costs and our carbon footprint.

The Solar Panels were installed in April 2023 ready for the summer season

Planned Developments

Our aims for future improvements includes:

  • New patio to remainder of pool site, in the style of the recent upgrade to Riverside Walk area.
  • Demolition of old changing rooms to rear of the site and development of this area. 
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