Media Release: Spooky time for kids at haunted swimming baths

YOUNGSTERS going to a Hallowe’en Party at Renfrew Baths are in for a real spooky time – because the place is haunted.

Staff at the swimming pool say they have seen two ghosts – one a lady dressed in white and another the spectre of a little boy who is thought to have died in an accident at the pool 80 years ago.

Duty manager, Hugh Watson, 44, even managed to film what he is adamant is the ghost of the boy on his mobile phone video camera and the footage is now on YouTube.

His colleague, 35 year-old lifeguard, Colin Dearing is now scared to venture alone into what is known as the ‘dunny’ – a dark passageway used for storage underneath the swimming pool which was built in 1921.

Now, kids turning up for the pool’s Hallowe’en Party on Friday, between 7pm and 8.30pm will hear about the ghosts that haunt Renfrew Baths.

Hugh’s scrape with the frightening spectre came last year when the pool was closed and he was waiting for other staff to get ready before he locked up for the night.

Hugh, from Paisley, explains: “I had just got a new camera phone when I was trying out the video camera. Out of the corner of my eye I saw this light on the stairs leading up to the viewing gallery and I pointed my phone at it.

“I couldn’t believe what I saw. It was the figure of a wee boy floating in and out of the wall at the stairs.

“The wee boy then floated through the railings on the other side of the stairs and hovered above the pool side for a second and then moved back on to the stairway.

“He then walked up the rest of the stairs – I could see an outline of his legs moving – before turning left along the gallery, floating in mid-air again and disappearing.

“I got all this on my phone video camera and I am convinced I saw a ghost. I was so shocked and amazed at what happened, I didn’t even think of being frightened.”

Hugh continued: “When I showed the video to other staff who were there that night they reminded me of the story of the wee boy who had died in an accident at the pool in the 1920s.

“The story goes that his father had brought back a German helmet from the First World War and the boy was playing around and put it on as he dived into the pool from the high-diving board that used to be here.

“Apparently, the force of the boy hitting the water meant that the helmet’s strap snapped the wee boy’s neck and he tragically died.”

Colin Dearing, from Renfrew is not the only member of the pool staff who has seen the ghost of the lady dressed in white. His encounter came in the dark and dingy ‘dunny’ underneath the pool.

Colin says: “A few years ago I was down there and suddenly I saw this figure of a lady wearing what I would describe as a white floaty dress. She looked at me for about five seconds and then just disappeared into thin air.

“I was shocked and when I came back up to the pool, people said my face was chalk white.

“I’m scared to go down there on my own. I’ll only go if I have a torch, there is someone with me and I cam straight back up again.”

Senior manager at the Renfrew pool, Charlie McDougall, said: “It’s not the first time I’ve heard staff say they have seen a ghost down in the ‘dunny’ and Hugh’s video evidence is pretty startling.

“As well as a youngsters’ fancy dress parade with prizes for the best dressed and the usual dookin’ for apples, the youngsters who come along to our Hallowe’en Party will hear a spooky tale or two about their favourite swimming pool.”


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Contact: Norman Macdonald
Phone: 01505 816980 or 07958 648814