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Women members finally accepted at Forty Foot club

The Sandycove Bathers’ Association is allowing women members after years of protests.

Members of the public pictured at the Forty Foot in Sandycove for the annual traditional Christmas swim.
Members of the public pictured at the Forty Foot in Sandycove for the annual traditional Christmas swim.
Image: Laura Hutton via Photocall Ireland

SANDYCOVE BATHERS’ ASSOCIATION will finally accept women members into its club.

Since the 70s women were able to swim with the club at the Forty Foot, but were not allowed to use the two club huts. One is for changing and the other has kitchen and clubhouse facilities.

Many women paid an annual fee to the club for maintenance but this did not entitle them to membership.

Many protests have been made by women swimmers over the years. A vote was held on the issue by the association in 2012 but it was defeated 24 to 17.

Councillors even called for the Government to review the 1937 operating licence for the club last October.

Finally, it was decided in a meeting last week that women could become full members and two women have already been accepted.

A new bathing shelter was put up by Dun Laoghaire-Rathdown County Council at the Forty Foot. The unisex changing room will now be used by the women swimmers.

Dun Laoghaire Councillor Jane Dillon Byrne, told TheJournal.ie that,

It’s long desired and people have been working on it since equality was introduced into Ireland in the 1970s.

Read: Dún Laoghaire to get floating swimming pool and urban beach>

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