Glasgow Amateur Swimming

The Glasgow Amateur Swimming Club Collection

A small collection of records from the Glasgow Amateur Swimming Club.

About the Glasgow Amateur Swimming Club

insert description

Hand drawn logo for the association from 1936.

The Glasgow Amateur Swimming Club was founded in 1897. By the end of the 19th century, space and equipment in Glasgow’s public parks was provided by the Corporation for virtually every popular sport. Swimming clubs made use of all the public baths which were located at various sites throughout Glasgow. To supplement informal sporting contact between members, clubs organised a range of semi-formal and formal events, and competitions were always popular.

insert description

A postcard view of Kinning Park public baths, West Scotland Street, in 1905.

The club’s headquarters were at Kinning Park Baths, West Scotland Street. The baths were opened in 1902 by the burgh of Kinning Park. The architects were Donald Bruce & E. A. B. Hay. Responsibility for the care of the baths passed to Glasgow Corporation in 1905 when the city annexed the small neighbour. In 1914 it was recorded that the facilities consisted of a swimming pool measuring 75 feet by 37 feet and twenty-two private baths for men and seven for women. There were thirty-four washing stalls in the wash-house. The building and equipment were valued at £15,980, placing Kinning Park in the middle range of the twenty public baths run by the Corporation at the time.

The building was demolished in the 1970s, to make way for the M8 motorway.

insert description

Hand drawn logo for the association from 1936.

According to the programme for the 1910 annual gala, annual subscriptions to the club were 2/6 (2 shilling sixpence) for seniors, and 1/6 (1 shilling sixpence) for juniors. Practice night was Tuesday from 9-10 o’clock.

“Particular attention is paid to learners – efficient Instructors being in attendance on all practice evenings. The Glasgow Amateur Swimming Club has always made a speciality of bringing on young swimmers by development of Style and improvement in Speed. Water-Polo and Life-Saving are taught.”

In 1910 the Honorary Secretary was J.G Lamond, 372 Mathieson Street.

The Ladies section met for practice on Wednesday evenings, from 9 to 10 o’clock. The Honorary Secretary was Miss Jeanie Wishart, 122 Hospital Street.

According to the Rules, Office Bearers and Fixtures list for the Season 1914 – 1915, the prizes for Seniors and mixed races were 1st prize, 8/- (8 shillings) ; 2nd, 6/- (6 shillings); 3rd, 4/6 (4 shillings and sixpence). Entry fees were 3d (3 pence) for seniors and free for juniors.

In 1914 the Entry Secretary for the club was Mr James McAdam, 42 Dixon Avenue, Crosshill.

About the collection

insert description

Page from the minute book of the club. The meeting was held in Kinning Park Baths, with the President Mr W Campbell, in the chair.

The collection contains 2 minute books and one cash book. Records cover the period 1910 – 1953:

Description Dates
Minute Book 1 17 May 1910 - 27 October 1919
Minute Book 2 19 January 1920 - 7 April 1936
Cash Book 1919 - 1953


insert description

A receipt issued at Pollokshaws Baths for the admission of 10 members of the Glasgow Amateur Swimming Club. 6th August 1952

Finding aid

Glasgow Amateur Swimming Club Collection listing (PDF, 94KB)

Further reading

Beanland, Christopher. (2020) Lido, a dip into outdoor swimming pools: the history, design and people behind them. London: Batsford.

Guzman, Ruben J. [2007] The swimming drill book. Champaign, Illinois, USA: Human Kinetics.

Means, Howard. (2020) Splash!, 10,000 years of swimming. London: Atlantic Books [Allen & Unwin].

Rogers, Kathy, ed. (2021) The outdoor swimming guide, over 400 of the best lidos, wild swimming and open-air swimming spots in England, Wales & Scotland. Sheffield: Vertebrate Publishing.

Tsui, Bonnie. (2021) Why we swim. London: Rider Books.

Hayes, Win. "The development of swimming facilities in Victorian and Edwardian Scotland: Glasgow and Edinburgh." Towns and Town Life in Scotland, edited by Rosie Findlay, Tri Tran and William Findlay, 2005, pp. 215-238. In Open Edition Books.

Dennistoun Baths Scrapbook, 1885

Govanhill Baths Archive

Glasgow City Archives

  • Department of Baths and Wash-houses (ref: D-BW)
  • Arlington Baths Club, 1847 – 1971 (Ref: TD965)
  • Western Amateur Swimming Club, 1879 – 1974 (Ref:TD604)

Glasgow Museums

Contact us

We welcome feedback from library users.

Contact us to let us know how we are doing or if you want to find out more.