12 June 2022
By Mary Bermingham
Ballymaloe House has reopened its outdoor heated pool for its guests this summer. Given the variable Irish climate; the pool, which is one of the few outdoor pools operating in Ireland, and is available all summer for guests to use.
The pool dates back to 1957 when it was dug out for the summer by Ivan Allen. He used a small tractor and scoop and it took him two years to complete. They hit three lines of rock at the deep end but luckily they had a German guest staying with them and helping on the farm and it turned out he was an explosives expert and so with his help they blew up the rock. It is shaped in a kidney shape because when he built it, Mr Allen couldn’t swim very well and this shape meant the deep end sides were only ever two swim strokes away.
The pool is heated environmentally via a Biomass Boiler, as is the whole of Ballymaloe House and outhouses.
Tobias, the groundsman at Ballymaloe House spent the last few months getting the pool ready for the summer. He rehomed the many tadpoles to the Ballymaloe pond that had made the pool their home over the colder months. He then carried out an extensive clean of the pool before filling it for the season ahead.
Laura Behan, General Manager at Ballymaloe House said: “We are delighted to have our pool back open for the summer. Hopefully we can look forward to some fantastic weather this summer and our guests can enjoy lazy days lounging by the pool.”
The outdoor, heated, swimming pool on the grounds of Ballymaloe House is filled each year as soon as the weather gets warm enough – usually sometime in May, and emptied when it gets too chilly to swim – usually in late September. It has a large shallow end and a separate paddling pool making it ideal for children, however, it is possible to do lengths if exercise is what you are after. It is free for residents to use. The deep end is two metres deep but only two strokes to the side. The rest is shallow and therefore safer for kids.
Ballymaloe House is also now open for ‘Conservatory Lunches’ with an a la carte light menu being served from Monday to Saturday from 1pm to 2.30pm.