Newcastle city council: Keep Newcastle Turkish Baths  Open
  • Petitioned Nick Forbes

This petition was delivered to:

Leader of Newcastle City Council
Nick Forbes
Head of Leisure Services
Anthony McKenna

Newcastle city council: Keep Newcastle Turkish Baths Open

    1. Joan Hewitt
    2. Petition by

      Joan Hewitt

      North shields, United Kingdom

It is a beautiful listed facility, one of the 11 remaining Victorian Turkish baths in England, with marble fittings, dark wood panelling and ceiling fans; steam, hot and cooling rooms; massages;and access to the swimming pool.It is a relaxation haven,with space for friends to talk quietly and refresh body and mind.With access to the swimming pool, it is an important and affordable social and health facility for local people, rather than a luxury reserved for the well-paid and gymtoned.  Of course it attracts after-work and retired clients as well,  tourists, visitors,  many from the entertainment industry, despite the fact  it has not been promoted  well. Its users say its  beauty and simplicity could never be replaced by a soulless health spa.It is at the heart of our city's wellbeing and heritage. We must not lose it.

To:
Nick Forbes, Leader of Newcastle City Council
Anthony McKenna, Head of Leisure Services
Keep Newcastle Turkish Baths Open

Sincerely,
[Your name]

Recent signatures

    News

    1. Say Goodbye on Thursday 28th

      Joan Hewitt
      Petition organiser

      Users say goodbye as Newcastle City Pool & Turkish Baths amongst first services closed due to City Council Budget Cuts

      Filming/Photo Interview Opportunities

      Thursday 28 March 2013

      Final day of public swimming and access to Newcastle City Pool & Turkish Baths

      4-5.30pm Celebrating and mourning the Turkish Baths & Pool.

      (Steps and Reception area)

      Musicians and Singers

      Speeches and Thanks to Pool & Baths Staff

      Wet Poets Society:

      • Bill Herbert, Poetry Professor, Newcastle University, performs his Blazing Grater poem (the farce of the Olympic legacy on Tyneside)to the tune of the Blaydon Races ; and poem on Turkish Baths.

      • Ellen Phethean reads late Julia Darling' s poem on Turkish Baths

      • Gerry Byrne reads a comic poem
      Joan Hewitt (Turkish Baths Campaigner) and Charles Gordon (Over 60S Higgs Boson Swimming Group) available for interviews along with other users.
      5.30-6.20 Last Public Swim (Swimming Pool)
      Fancy dress, and fun swimming

    2. 6. 5 million viewers

      Joan Hewitt
      Petition organiser

      Turkish Baths women are on the One show tonight at 7. 30, repeat BBC. 2 , 2 p,m. tomorrow.There is also footage of and reference to the Pool, and need for investment.6. 5 million viewers.Let's hope some are rich and principled.
      Wed ,20th.

    3. Cautious optimism.

      Joan Hewitt
      Petition organiser

      Met the MP Nick Brown today.He is keen to explore every option of keeping Baths and Pool open and is asking lots of questions. Totally coincidentally he's come up with the same Community Trust , Greenwich Leisure Services , that I was impressed by and have been banging on about to every councillor for months. He has met the director, and is inviting them up to talk to council . I hear the Pool will stay open till school year finishes and he agrees if we can keep the Baths open , good.

    4. Reached 1,000 signatures
    5. Protest. March.6th .5. p.m Civic Centre before final Budget votes at 6.

      Joan Hewitt
      Petition organiser

      Email today from NicK Forbes says the proposal is still to close Baths and Pool.For fuller text, see Save Newcastle Turkish Baths Facebook page.

    6. Model letter/ email for Don McDonald defence campaign:the right to protest

      Joan Hewitt
      Petition organiser

      For the whole letter, see Save Newcastle Turkish Baths Page
      Re the arrest of MichaelMacDonald (Don) on the night of the 16th February. The arrest followedthe successful mass protest which saw 1,500 people local people comeout in a peaceful protest against huge local cuts. Don was served afixed penalty notice under Section 5 of the Public Order Act, but hasreturned this notice to the court and has stated his intention tofight the charge. His arrest has serious implications for publicprotest and freedom of expression in Newcastle and nationally. We
      stand with him against this attack on the right to protest.
      The arrest was based on an encounter between Don and Newcastle City
      Council leader Nick Forbes and his companion following the recent
      “Stop The Cuts! Save Our Services” march and rally in Newcastle City
      Centre. Don's description of the event is freely available at the Right to
      Challenge the Challenge the Cuts website. .. "

    7. MP keen to save Baths and Pool

      Joan Hewitt
      Petition organiser

      Gosh, getting good responses from telephoning today. MP Nick Brown's London office rand to offer an appointment on Baths , 11 , Friday, bis out Factory. Any Pool people with financial case want to come?

    8. It seems that discussions may go on beyond the vote

      Joan Hewitt
      Petition organiser

      I discovered the Labour group meeting is tonight when I rang 6 Labour councillors by phone today: 3 were in. Courtesy on both sides and they were keen to talk. In the ward which the baths and pool are in,South Jesmond , two of the three had never been to the Baths. (One is going tomorrow). One MP's office gave me a contact in London, saying discussions had been going on. I have left a message. If you have friends who have never seen the Baths, try this link. If you have, spare yourself the sight of me looking sweaty.

      Newcastle's Turkish Delight: Edwardian Baths Under Threat

      A suite of Edwardian Turkish baths is under threat of closure as part of Newcastle City Council's £100m package of budget cuts. Campaigners are urging people in the city to discover this hidden gem before it's too late, and support the fight to save it.

    9. Much shorter Sky TV coverage than hoped for

      Joan Hewitt
      Petition organiser

      It will be only a short news clip Turkish Baths..I was envisaging me in a silky bathrobe droning on like Stephen Fry about the history and aesthetics.But i want to make the point that closure of the pool hurts far more people than steamers alone. Great Chronicle article on Baths below

      http://www.chroniclelive.co.uk/north-east-news/evening-chronicle-news/2013/02/25/emmerdale-star-back-fight-to-keep-newcastle-s-turkish-baths-72703-32876783/

    10. sky TV Thursday 28th Feb

      Joan Hewitt
      Petition organiser

      Sky TV just rang and asked me to do a tour of the Baths with female reporter , show her the routine, and tell her the prices etc. 10 a.m. This Thursday with a female camera woman. I would like them to meet Louise and Trish, as so many of us who have travelled think they are the best masseuses in the world. Anyone like to book the 10.30 massage slot, who doesn't mind being filmed? Go ahead and book.
      I will also take them through to the Pool, and do a Nicola or a Duncan. Although any pool campaigners free to have a steam with me first, welcome.

    11. More coverage in Journal!

      Joan Hewitt
      Petition organiser

      Wonderful full lpage endorsement of the Baths in Journal today, by Emmerdale actress, our own Charlie Hardwick. Adrian Pearson is doing his bit for us. BUt AAgh! No mention of the City POOL from the council response, as if we were doing a Baths standalone campaign.And the photo of the SWim- in at the Pool ( nice shot of poet Degna Stone doing Zumba) has a caption for Elswick Pool.

    12. Press photo coverage at last!

      Joan Hewitt
      Petition organiser

      Yesterday's Chronicle: good interior photos of Turkish Baths. And me looking grim. In one.
      (Don't you smile, he said, you're supposed to be serious.). Nice article.May be in Journal Monday.First time most NCL residents will have seen inside. They also used some of following comment from a petition- signer . "The Turkish Baths have become one of the best loved parts of the programme for all my colleagues and friends from Germany. It has been a conference ambassador, mood lighter and island of warmth in the midst of chilly winter mornings. As part of Newcastle's cultural heritage, it is one of the things to remember as much as looking down Grey Street or reading in the Lit&Phil. Don't let us lose this oasis of Geordie warmth!"

    13. Short of time? live abroad? not sure who to lobby?

      Joan Hewitt
      Petition organiser

      See my advice on emails elsewhere on this page. Make it short and personal with economic arguments (attraction, not exploited enough) highlighted. Nick.forbes@newcastle.gov.uk, Leader,Ged.Bell@newcastle.gov.uk ( Head Of leisure)., ann.scholfield@newcastle.gov.uk. (Wellbeing for life committee).David. cook@newcastle.gov.uk( Historic environment committee; veronica.dunn@newcastle.gov.uk ( cabinet member for Adult and culture services.) Hazel. stephenson,@newcastle.gov.uk ( cabinet). henri.murison@newcastle.gov.uk (Cabinet member and portfolio on quality of life. The cabinet meeting is on Monday and they read emails at weekend often. When you have more time, lobby the ordinary councillors.

    14. Make yr email to councillors much shorter than mine!

      Joan Hewitt
      Petition organiser

      Keep it short, and your own style - fresh is fresh! But just for your info, I sent this to cabinet members (see list) with strong Business interests (so many of them have).I will send to others, slightly altered in order, if they e.g are on the Health and Well Being committee. Full email on Save Newcastle Turkish baths FB page.
      Loss of potential revenue to Newcastle,with loss of heritage, community,sports and health benefits
      Dear x. We urge you strongly to join us in finding ways of keeping the beautiful Edwardian Turkish Baths and the essential City Pool open. 1.The Baths. While we understand the need to invest in Business development on a large scale, the revenue Newcastle gains from being an attractive city to visitors has been considerable. Small can be beautiful, and in the case of the under under-promoted, little- known Edwardian Turkish baths , it certainly is. We have made detailed financial proposals to Leisure officer Tony MCkenna ....

    15. Good news; the survey on price rises; and Saturday's March

      Joan Hewitt
      Petition organiser

      After the news that the City Hall has been " rescued", it appears that Friday will see the Council voting on revised Budget plans.This MAY include the discussion of the whole Northumberland complex of Turkish Baths, City Pool and the Hall being retained , with our revenue -increasing proposals for the whole complex being seriously considered.

      My bird said revised budget proposals should be up on council website on Friday about 3. (See newcastle.gov.uk/your-council/budget proposal ).
      We should wait till then before lobbying councillors with a " we welcome/ and/ or we urge" email or tweet over the weekend- which is when they read them, I'm told - as more meetings will take place on Monday.

      On Saturday a.m..I will message you the emails and Twitter accounts of most relevant MPs and councillors for you to contact.

      Join us, with a towel round your neck, at noon outside the Centre of Life to march to Monument for a rally against cuts.

    16. Quick survey on price rises you suggest to Keep the Baths open

      Joan Hewitt
      Petition organiser

      It takes only 3 minutes max. We need this ifo this week.Please get as many as possible to join in.
      http://www.surveymonkey.com/s/KT3D8M3

    17. Reached 750 signatures
    18. We have till Friday Feb Ist to underpin the petition with a brief email

      Joan Hewitt
      Petition organiser

      See my account of the very brief meeting with the Council on my Facebook page or Save Newcastle Pool page. You will understand why we MUST reinforce the petition with emails. Just a sentence or two but before Friday, the last day we can express our views to the council. It takes a minute to register.
      letstalk@newcastle.gov.uk
      Feel more positive today as at 8 a.m.McKenna offered a meeting for a more detailed discussion of our proposals: Thursday 7 Feb , 11 a.m. Anyone willing to help us prepare the financial case ( not too detailed) you will be welcomed with open arms.

    19. Reached 500 signatures
    20. Meeting with council 5p.m. Civic Centre Monday 28th January

      Joan Hewitt
      Petition organiser

      We urgently need ideas for preserving the Baths and ultimately having them re-opened for use. Please contact me with your phone number: Joan.hewitt@tinyworld.co.uk, with your phone number,for brief chat, if easier than email.

    21. THE STEAM- IN: this Saturday

      Joan Hewitt
      Petition organiser

      This Saturday, women , join us in the morning in the Baths. I will be there from 10. 15 . NB. Pool is closed from 1till 2 ; not the Turkish.There are currently massage slots available all day. Ring to avoid disappointment, and book the Baths at same time. 2771844.

      Bring lunch and join the PRESS PHOTOSHOOT for the Big Swim In ( male and female) organised by the Pool campaign.Bring along your most colourful towel, ( for wear on head or over clothes, unless you are really fit - both meanings)and placards or artwork.You could come to the Swim- in and do the Turkish afterwards.
      Men, join us in the photoshoot.

      Newcastle city council: Keep Newcastle Turkish Baths Open

      It is a beautiful listed facility, one of the 11 remaining Victorian Turkish baths in England, with marble fittings, dark wood panelling and ceiling...

    22. Meeting the council to save the Turkish Baths

      Joan Hewitt
      Petition organiser

      We have been invited to meet the 'relevant officers'. I need your ideas on 'how to save ' ( rather than 'why'- we have those in your Petition comments). If you have any useful expertise or would just be willing to accompany me, contact me ASAP before I set up the meeting.Joan. Hewitt@tinyworld.co.uk .AND one last push needed to get more signatures in the next few days.

    23. I have contacted the Council re Newcastle Turkish Baths in the Ctty Pool

      Joan Hewitt
      Petition organiser

      256 signatures so far:not many know about the baths because it has been so badly-promoted, within the Pool,Northumberland St, so please visit, sign and share.Some superb comments which I will use in press promotion, January.Email me -not before Jan, though -with ideas for and if you will participate in an event. Towels on heads? Turkish music ? belly-dancing? Poems? Rang the city council and Nick Forbes's sec. told me a. January was fine , as the consultation process over cuts was continuing into Feb. b. she used the City pool, also threatened. c. her uncle swore by the Turkish baths for his own health! I have requested a meeting, and will also do Press stuff and an event. . Women Tues. Thurs, and Sat men alternates. Book your massage, though, before.Merry Christmas and thank you, all.

    24. Reached 250 signatures

    Supporters

    Reasons for signing

    • Claire Hart KELSO, UNITED KINGDOM
      • 8 months ago

      An original work of art yet practical necessity for all, don't let our history die !

      REPORT THIS COMMENT:
    • wendy hall GATESHEAD, UNITED KINGDOM
      • 8 months ago

      It is our heritage

      REPORT THIS COMMENT:
    • peter middleton SUNDERLAND, UNITED KINGDOM
      • 8 months ago

      Its one great place. Ands its history.

      REPORT THIS COMMENT:
    • Paul Rathbone NEWCASTLE UPON TYNE, UNITED STATES
      • 10 months ago

      Keep this essential facility open for everyone, as it always has been...

      REPORT THIS COMMENT:
    • brian young SYDNEY, AUSTRALIA
      • 11 months ago

      its a part of Newcastle culture and once closed will never be the same- many cities in the world would dream of having something a building as wonderful as this. Reduce the number of fat cat politicians and invest within the Newcastle and local community

      REPORT THIS COMMENT:

    Develop your own tools to win.

    Use the Change.org API to develop your own organising tools. Find out how to get started.