HISTORY

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HISTORY

1700
1783
1822
1833
1835
1840s
1854
1855
1857
1858
1859
1860s
1862
1863
1867
1873
1878
1884
1888
1894
1901
1904
1905
1906
1907
1908
1909
1910
1912
1914
1915
1920
1922
1923
1925
1920s
1928
1929
1930
1931
1930s
1933
1934
1935
1936
1937
1938
1940s
1949
1952
1953
1955
1956
1960s
1969
1970
1972
1978
1980
1987
1991
1992
1993
1994
1995
1996
1997
1998
1999
2000
2001
2002
2007
2011
2012

3000 before present

Beach of the Yalukit-William people formed by receeding waters of bay

1783

Prince Regent establishes court at Brighton, England, Sea bathing becomes fashionable

1822

Royal Pavillion, with fantasy dome, built at Brighton, England

1833

Daylight bathing ban, NSW

1835

Melbourne settled by Europeans

1840s

Tents,cottages and bathing boxes at St Kilda for 'bathing season'

1854

Captain Kenney's Bathing Ship moved to north of pier

1855

Kenney's Bathing Ship moved to north of pier

1857

Railway comes to St Kilda

1858

St Kilda Bathing Company House opens opposite the New Bath Hotel (now site of Esplanade Hotel)

1859

Swimming carnivals popular. Kenney presents silver cup to Charles Steedman

1860s

Several baths for men and women open along shores

1862

Kenney's Bathing Ship washes onto its side

1863

Storms destroy several baths

1867

Manual of Swimming, by Charles Steedman published in Melbourne and London

1873

26 000 baths reputed to have been taken at the St Kilda Ladies Baths

1878

The Esplanade Hotel opens

1884

Complaints about 'unnecessary nudity' at Men's baths

1888

Cable tram comes to St Kilda

1894

Melbourne Swimming Club forms

1901

Duke and Duchess of Cornwall and Yor Island at St Kilda, on way to open the first parliament of the Commonwealth of Australia, in Melbourne

1904

Tom (Teunis) Bakker begins work at baths as life-guard. Stays for 51 years

1905

Foreshore Commitee formed. Beautification of foreshore begins, to Carlo Catan's design

1906

St Kilda Propletary Baths open

1907

Australian swimmer Annette Kellerman arrested in Boston for design of her costume

1908

Heatwave in Melbourne. Open bathing in daylight hours permitted in Hobson's Bay. Frank Beaurepaire wins silver and bronze at London Olympic Games

1909

St Kilda Royal Life Saving Club forms. Lilian Beaurepaire club champion

1910

Frank Beaurapire wins 51 successuve races including every British title from the 100 yards to the 1 mile

1912

Removal of Kenney's Bathing Ship Baths. Opening of Luna Park. Open Sea Bathers' League challenges ban on Sunday bathing

1914

Council unsuccessfully imposes divided 'sex areas' on beach to control mixed bathing. Nell Kenney completes long distance swims in UK and America. 1000 bathers protest over restrictions on Sunday bathing

1915

Legendary Hawaiian swimmer Duke Kahanamoko swims at St Kilda Baths

1920

Beaurepaire returns to competitive swimming. Defeats American champion Norman Ross over half mile at the St Kilda Baths. Wins bronze 1500 yards at Antwerp Olympics

1922

Complaints about 'night-basking' and lewd behavior on St Kilday beach

1923

Bayside councils meet to codify beach regulations

1925

St Kilda Proprietary Baths burn down. Thomas Kenney manager at the time

1920s

Concerted campaign for new baths and better changing rooms

1928

Beaurepaire offers to donate a tiled 'still-water' pool to St Kilda. Offer declined. Various design proposaid for new baths but no action taken. Speedo begins manufacturing bathing costumes.

1929

Visiting Norwegian champion swimmer Arne Borg declares St Kilda Sea Baths 'a pile of junk'. Council begins new pool, designed by City Engineer. Beaurepaire begins Herald Learn-to-Swim campaign

1930

Young man taken by shark from Middle Brighton pier, before hundreds of spectators

1931

St Kilda City Baths open. Controversy over design.

1930s

Complaints about briefness of women's bathing costumes, men 'rolling down' their straps and people walking the streets in their beach-wear

1933

Elston, Queensland, renamed Surfer's Paradise

1934

King tides at St Kilda

1935

Young man dies after diving in the baths and breaking his spine. Two sisters drown. at Elwood

1936

Campaign to allow mixed bathing in women's section of St Kilda City Baths

1937

Thirteen bathers prosecuted by St Kilda Council for walking in their bathers and rolling down their straps. Surfers' Paradise Hotel opens.

1938

Men allowed to wear bathing trunks without straps. Mixed bathing permitted at baths

1940s

St Kilda Baths popular with American soldiers

1949

Boy caught on piling and drowned at baths

1952

Council reveals it spent £ 104,320 on baths over 21 years, and recieved £ 43,134 in rent.

1953

Council does not renew lease and baths revert to Crown

1955

Baths in disrepair

1956

South Pacific Health Club and Cabaret opens

1960s

St Kilda promoted as Gold Coast of the south

1969

Elwood marina opens. Whiskey au GoGo opens in cabaret rooms at baths

1970

Prince Charles swims at Elwood and declares it 'like swimming in diluted sewage'. Seaquarium takes over baths and evicts Melbourne Swimming Club from baths. Club's memorial honour board disappears

1972

Proposal for highrise development with casino for George Hotel

1978

Cyrstal Ballroom opens at Seaview (George) Hotel

1980

Redevelopment of St Kilda beach, Shark fence removed from baths. Through 1970s and 1980s nightclubs at baths proliferate

1987

St Kilda Council issues Planning Consent Order for future development of baths. Development must include hot sea baths and relate to beach activities and heritage for foreshore

1991

Government calls for tenderss to develop baths

1992

Zarawaters wins tender with design by Allan Powell. Baths to re-open, Spring 1993

1993

Baths close, despite vocal public campaign of opposition. St Kilda Council dissolved and replaced by Commissioners, as prelude to amalgamation.

1994

Little work on baths' site. Design modifications by Council under the Commissioners. High rise proposed for Esplanade Hotel site (again)

1995

Old baths demolished. Problems between developer and construction company. Public shocked and dismayed by the height, bulk and roofscape of building, not to Allan Powell's original design

1996

Newly elected council takes developer to Administrative Appeals Tribunal. AAT laments additions but finds most of them legal

1997

Proposals submitted to Council for completion of baths. Esplanade Alliance calls for sweeping design changes. Search for new developer. Public cynicism deepens.

1998

Esplanade Alliance holds public meetings and successfully calls for review committee for design of baths. Developer in recievership. Extensive roof demolitions negatiated with developers(and receivers)

1999

Owner Jannie Tay refinances project. Demolition completed but statemate over design persists. Planning permit extended. Underground carpark approved

2000

Slow progress as council and developer negotiate acceptable design details. Planning permit extended

2001

Planning permit extended Rapid completion for April opening of sea baths

2002

Melbourne's finest dining, bars, cafes, Internationally awarded Day Spa and Health Club and of course Australia's only indoor natural Seawater pool are the epicenter of Melbournee's affinity with Port Phillip Bay

2007

City of Port Phillip complete a major upgrade of the foreshore in front of the St Kilda Sea Baths.

2011

One of Melbourne's finest Function and Events centre, Encore St Kilda Opens to great acclaim.

2012

St Kilda Sea Baths hosts the first ever Ironman Asia-Pacific Championship that sells out in just over 5 minutes(1600 competitors)

In the 19th century, swimming from the open beach was prohibited during daylight hours, so bathers were compelled to keep within the baths. In 1857 a railway line was built from Melbourne to St. Kilda as well as a connection loop between St. Kilda and Windsor. These railway lines brought increased patronage to the privately run sea baths, the jetty promenade and the St. Kilda Cup. Cricket and bowling clubs were formed in 1855 and 1865. By the mid 1860s St. Kilda had about fifteen hotels including the George, formerly the Seaview (1857). St. Kilda by then was a borough (1863), having been proclaimed a municipality separate from Melbourne city on 24 April, 1855.

St. Kilda's population more than doubled between 1870 and 1890 to about 19,000 persons. The opening of tram services to St. Kilda in 1888 and 1891 brought more pleasure seekers, somewhat lowering the tone and impelling the well-to-do towards South Yarra and Toorak. The 1890s depression caused several of the large mansions to be subdivided for apartment or boarding-house accommodation. "Oberwyl" was a spectacular example of a mansion built in 1856, whose owner failed in the 1870s, and the building became a school.
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