Leichhardt Park Aquatic Centre turns 50 years.

Leichhardt Park Aquatic Centre’s 50th Anniversary from Localnotes on Vimeo.

Leichhardt Park Aquatic Centre turns 50 this November.

Public pool swimming at this site commenced around 1907 when it was a sea bath and in 1960 the current pool was established.

Do you have any stories, memoirs, photos, documents or memorabilia of Leichhardt Park Aquatic Centre if you do please. email: history@innerwest.nsw.gov.au

LPAC diving boards 1960s

The Pool By Julie Millard

I have spent many great hours at the Leichhardt Pool over the past 50 years. When I was just 4 years old my parents, my 3 year old sister Terry and I lived in the corner shop just down the hill from the pool. When the wind blew from the north we would sit in the small backyard, fence garnered with the choko vine and shed full of soft drink bottles, and enviously listen to the sounds of laughter and shrieks coming from the pool.

Life was too busy for leisurely hours swimming, until the day my Aunty Pam came to visit. Tall and worldly she seemed like a goddess to us. Our excited and at times sulky begging eventually wore down my parents. The instructions for good behaviour and sun hats having been dispensed we set off for an afternoon of pleasure.

And it was. Pools of blue water, with diving boards so high it hurt to crane your neck. We swam and splashed and laughed.

Nearing our time to leave my Aunty Pam told us two blond nymphs to sit on the side of the deep diving pool and wait while she did some diving and chatted with the boys.

Minutes passed and we became bored. So imagine my horror when my sister jumped in, to see how deep it was. Panic burst my chest as I watched her head just bobbing above the surface with no steps or ledge for her to stand on. I reached out my hand trying to grab her. Her frantic dog-paddling pushing her further away from me. I flattened myself on the pools edge and stretched so far out and grabbed her. She then pulled me into the pool.

How long we two young kids were frantically trying to get out of the pool I don’t know. But a male swimmer saw us struggling, initially thinking it was a mother and child.

Terry and I woke up in the First Aid room a little oblivious to all the fuss, with my Aunty berating us. Of course we then had to face our parents with Aunty Pam consumed with guilt – she was only 14.