Poplar Baths, the closest council-owned leisure centre to Canary Wharf, has now reopened nearly 30 years after it closed its doors.

The grade two listed building at East India Dock Road has been refurbished by Guildmore and now boasts an Art Deco entrance lobby, a sports hall, a 25m main pool and learner pool and a cafe.

The leisure centre, run by GLL, will have a variety of programmes and activities including badminton, gymnastics, netball, swimming and holiday programmes.

The Mayor of Tower Hamlets John Biggs said: ““I am thrilled that such a prestigious building has been brought back into use and will benefit the local community by providing a first class swimming pool and sports activities.

The 25m swimming pool and learner pool

“Many people have memories of using the baths and are pleased to see it back in use for new generations to enjoy.”

Guildmore partnered with Tower Hamlets Council, Historic England and Pringle Richards Sharratt Architects to transform the 1930s building.

Claire Brady of Historic England said: “We are delighted to have been part of the journey to bring this building at risk and important piece of Poplar back to life.

“Thanks to such a fantastic project, people will now be able to enjoy its facilities as well as appreciate the history and value of such a magnificent building.”

The sports hall

GLL managing director Mark Sesnan said: “As a social enterprise, GLL exists to promote the health and wellbeing of local communities and extending opportunities through increased participation.

“We have a lot of experience of managing heritage assets sensitively and are proud to be entrusted with the magnificent Poplar Baths.”

Activity based memberships at Poplar Baths are available from £29.95 per month with some options requiring a joining fee of £24.95.

The council will be hosting an open day on Saturday, August 13 at Poplar Baths where residents can have a tour of the new leisure centre and try out taster sports and activity sessions.

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