Historic Grade II-listed Ripon Spa Baths put up for sale for a second time

Ripon Spa Baths is up for sale once againRipon Spa Baths is up for sale once again
Ripon Spa Baths is up for sale once again
The historic Ripon Spa Baths is to be put up for sale for a second time by Harrogate Borough Council.

The council has announced the baths – which was the last of its kind to be opened in England – will go on the market for an undisclosed sum “in the coming months”.

It has sparked concerns amongst city councillors who say they want to see the 116-year-old Grade II listed building kept in use as a community facility and not converted into housing by developers.

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Coun Andrew Williams, leader of Ripon City Council, said: “The site has been a community facility since 1905, it is the only spa to be opened by a member of the royal family and is Grade II listed – and I would hate for all of that to only be available to certain people if it is converted into housing.

“Over the next few years around 10,000 new homes will be built in and around the city and we desperately need more community facilities. The baths could be used as an arts gallery, museum or bowling alley – there are any number of future possible uses that would benefit the community.”

Ripon Spa Baths was opened by Princess Henry of Battenberg in 1905 and the swimming pool to the rear of the original building was added in the 1930s.

According to reports at the time, the site was put up for sale in 2008 with a £3.3m price tag but was later taken off the market after a community campaign.

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News of the second sale attempt comes as a new six-lane swimming pool is being built at the existing Ripon Leisure Centre on Dallamires Lane, with works expected to be completed in November 2021.

A spokesman for Harrogate Borough Council said: “Ripon Spa Baths has served the community well over the years and is now being replaced by a modern, state-of-the-art pool at Ripon Leisure Centre.

“Once the project is complete, it will provide much needed state-of-the-art facilities that will encourage a healthier and more active lifestyle for our residents.

“The future sale, and redevelopment of the listed building, would allow this local asset to be redeveloped (subject to planning approval) and remain as a city landmark.”

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