Ironmonger Row (Turkish) Baths, Islington EC1
Published 19 October 2009
It is located on 1-11 Ironmonger Row, near Old Street Station in the borough of Islington, London. Originally built as a public wash house, it was later upgraded to a Turkish Bath (or Hamam), and now has a swimming pool, fitness gym, and community laundry area (launderette) in addition to the Turkish Bath.
Given a Grade II listing in 2006, the council of Islington is now planning a massive renovation scheme that will see the whole building closed from 2010 till 2012, in order to provide a massive upgrade to the existing facilities. The current gym will be relocated to a much bigger area, the 30m indoor public swimming pool will be renovated, and the shallow kid’s teaching pool will be radically revamped, and also serve as a separate female-only swimming pool at certain times.
The Turkish Baths at Ironmonger Row are some of the oldest in London, as well as one of the most well known. Many will miss the facilities when it shuts down for renovation, but the council has made alternative plans to allow its members to use the Porchester Baths in Bayswater as well as the York Hall Spa in Bethnal Green. But the 3 different hot rooms and the steam room will be sorely missed. If you have never been to a Turkish Bath before, check out this excellent guide from the BBC on how to enjoy the full experience.
Ironmonger Row is still open till at least May 2010, so if you’ve ever wanted to experience a Turkish Bath or just want to admire its 30’s architecture, you still have lots of time to go before its closed down till 2012!
Nearest Tube station: Old Street Station (roughly 5 minutes walk). Other nearby stations include Barbican and Angel.
Buses that stop nearby: Numbers 55, 243, 43, 205, 214, 394, 4, and 54.
Reception phone number: 020 7253 4011
Address: 1-11 Ironmonger Row, London EC1V 3QF