College Supports Heritage Lottery Funding Application

Close to Brighton, Saltdean Lido may not immediately spring to mind as a firefighter training venue but it was requisitioned for training run by the National Fire Service College during World War II. The lido was used as a water tank, and the grounds were used by instructors and fire officers for training exercises. Officers were housed at the Art Deco Ocean Hotel where classes were taught. Between September 1941 and April 1948 around 13,000 firefighters trained at the Lido and Ocean Hotel.

Vacant since 2011, the Lido, is one of the finest remaining examples of modernist lidos in the UK, and is on English Heritage’s At Risk Register. A Community Interest Group (CIC) was set-up by local residents to secure funding for the restoration. They approached Carole Jeffcock, College Librarian, for historical information and photos which have helped to secure extensive funding from the Heritage Lottery Fund.

The CIC is now in possession of the site’s 60 year lease and has completed phase one of the project – the restoration of the original 40m pool tank, and grounds. Phase two requires further funding but will house a heritage café – which will tell the story of the lido and hotel’s history, and the requisition by the National Fire Service.

Deryck Chester, Director, Saltdean Lido CIC says “We’d like to take this opportunity to thank Carole Jeffcock, who has helped us with our research, and has kindly given us access to the College records about the National Fire Service’s time at Saltdean. If anyone has any further information, photos, or we’d love to hear from you. You can contact me at or follow the link to our website:



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