Glan-y-Mor, The Knap, Barry
Water's Edge Hotel
The 'Wedge', as it was known by locals, was built in 1960. After the demolition of Glan-y-mor it became an old peoples' home, but during 2003 it closed and was eventually boarded up, and in May 2005 it was sold. Demolition took place during September 2005 and the last bit was torn down on 22 September. It is to be redeveloped as 26 luxury apartments.
When the property developers were preparing for the houses that were to be built on the Glan-y-Mor site, Roman remains were found in about the same area as the tennis courts. A preservation order was put on this part of the site, and it was excavated by the Glamorgan-Gwent Archaeological Trust. It is believed to be the site of the biggest Roman sea fort in the country. The remains of the fort have been preserved, so not all of the Glan-y-Mor site was developed. Some of the remains, "a stone, roughly square building, thought to be freestanding", were observed at the Waters Edge Hotel as it was being built. The demolition of the hotel will allow for excavation of these Roman remains, and the Glamorgan-Gwent Archaeological Trust has already placed a recommendation with the Vale of Glamorgan planners that this should be permitted as part of the development. Watch this space for details of their findings!
Bindles, the former ballroom next to the Waters Edge Hotel, opened on Valentine's day in 1928. The recession in the 1980s affected business, with 120 companies that had engaged its services ceasing to trade. On 1st May 1982 Joe Loss, a famous band leader, played out the last night of music before Bindles closed. It was then converted to a TV studio, however it was later destroyed by a fire. It then became a restaurant, but this closed at the end of the century. It was finally redeveloped as flats in 2002-3.
The Knap Lido
The Knap Lido opened on 1st May 1926 and was one of the largest open-air pools in Britain, being 120 yards long and 30 yards wide. It contained over one million gallons of unheated sea water. The water was initially taken from the sea at high tide using a sluice system, but later a pump was installed. The pool was at its most popular in the 1950s, but fell into decline in the 1980s due in part to new safety regulations concerning the number of lifeguards (good old red tape!) and a sewage treatment plant that was built in the grounds. It closed in 1996 and despite fierce opposition, including a 15,000 signature petition, the outbuildings were demolished and the pool was filled in, starting 1st March 2004. By July 2004 the site had been landscaped. It has since been fenced off, maybe due to the ground being rather boggy (before they filled in the pool did anyone remember to pull the plug out?).
PS: A search for 'Knap' on ebay is usually interesting - try it, and see why!
Lido during construction - pre-Glanymor!!
1937 - In all it’s Glory!
Derelict changing huts c1998
Just after being filled in and landscaped
The Bridge Cafe was rebuilt in the same style during 2005. It is owned and run by the daughter of the elderly couple who used to run it in the 1970s
A Third-century Maritime Establishment at Cold Knap, Barry, South Glamorgan. Edith Evans, G. Dowell & H. J. Thomas. Britannia.Vol XVI, 1985.
Gaynor Gimblett (now Gaynor Clifford)
Kita Gimblett (now Kita Williams)
Axis Historical Society, Barry
Tom Clemett's History of Barry
Neil Maylan, Glamorgan-Gwent Archaelogical Trust
Photo by Gaymor Clifford mid June 2005