The end of Aspudden public bath


Before all the Christmas joy begins, I want to tell you how things went with Aspudden public bath, that I have posted about before. (If you missed the earlier posts, they can be found here, here and here.)

The struggle to save the bath continued outside the building after the police ended the occupation. People demonstrated, formed a Bath group to raise money, held meetings, went to Municipal government meetings trying to talk to politicians – you name it, they did it. The bath and the demonstrations around it have been mentioned in both local and national newspapers and TV news, but to no avail. The politicians would not listen, and the demolition started from inside the bath, with police guarding the outside.

On the night between Dec 9 and 10, the demonstrations to save the bath were called off. The cars parked in the middle of the street outside, to prevent the excavators from reaching the bath, were moved. At midnight a large number of people from Aspudden (including myself) marched past the police guards to lay down roses in front of the bath. A very sad moment, and many of us had tears in our eyes. A few days later the last walls of the building were torn down, and now the site is just a pile of dust and snow.


I don´t often post photos, but I just happened to photograph the bath sign on the 24th of November – which turned out to be the last night the sign was lit. I´m posting it as a little tribute to a bath that was in use the whole time from 1919 to a few months ago.

Big cities can seem so anonymous sometimes, and the people living there a bit jaded, and you often get a feeling that no one really cares what happens around them. But in this case both old and young – ordinary people! – stood up for their beliefs. In the process, a lot of people got to know each other and I know Aspudden is a few degrees warmer now, in spite of the snow. I am so proud to live in a community where people care about their surroundings and are ready to give their time and efforts to try to change things for the better.

15 x 13,5 cm, ink on Fabriano Rosapina paper (sketchbook page).

14 Responses to “The end of Aspudden public bath”

  1. I’m so sorry to hear it ended this way, Nina…but oh, yes, it DOES feel good to have actually done something, with your neighbors.

    Too many lovely old buildings are gone now…I miss them too.

  2. MaryO says:

    What a shame, Nina. I do hope those politicians will be voted out of office in the next elections, since they really aren’t serving the interests of the people it seems!

  3. Ellen says:

    The worst would have been if nobody tried. It sounds as if you and your neighbors gave it all you could. One day, years from now someone will say how sad it is that it’s gone. But you will know that you fought the good fight to save it.

    I have to say thank you or letting us be a part of this, so many thousands of miles away.

  4. Jenny says:

    Hej, jag hittade hit nu idag och blev bara så lycklig… Jag är inte mycket till tecknare, men lusten finns nånstans och jag har gett mig fan på att brotta ner jante-och-prestationsmonstret som säger att jag inte “ritar fint” nog att ens få känna glädjen i att försöka. Och då är din blogg en sådan ofantlig lycka – här är det illustrationslycka i vartenda inlägg, och din okomplicerade stil bjuder verkligen in, och får mig att tänka att… jag SKA lära mig, SKA testa mig fram och SKA framför allt göra det av glädje! :-)

    Vad gäller Aspuddsbadet är det en sorglig historia, men jag känner ändå en enorm värme i hur du berättat den.

    • Oj, tackar, här haglar komplimangerna! :)
      Kul att du hittat hit, och att du gillar det du ser. Det är roligt att höra att du gett dig DEN på att teckna. Hoppas du kommer vidare i de planerna, strunta i resultaten så länge. Jante brukar vilja ge sig på just den detaljen i början, men det är själva tecknandet och försökandet som är det viktiga för att komma igång. Och börjar man sen tycka att det är riktigt kul, så har inte prestationsmonstret mycket att sätta emot. Och jag tror du är inne på en väldigt bra tanke där – att man ska göra det av/med glädje.
      Gott nytt år, och lycka till!

  5. Leona says:

    Boy I did follow this story, it finally came to an ending. By the way I loved the pointsetta (spelled incorrectly I’m sure). The illumination that happens because you’ve used led and color is very complimentary to the subject.

  6. Matthew says:

    I have been following your story, and I feel very sorry for the loss … unfortunately these things don’t always go the way they should. Thank you for sharing such an important and personal series of events through your drawings.

  7. vickylw says:

    Like loosing an old friend after enjoying your former posts of this old building. I’m so sorry to see it end this way.

  8. Chris says:

    This is so sad. Thank you for sharing those links. I get behind, and your drawings of the bath along with the story touched me. I am very sorry.

  9. Felicity says:

    Nina, would you mind if I nominated your painting of Hötorgscity for the ‘Best Artwork (Place) on a blog 2009′, on Katherine Tyrrell’s blog Making a Mark?

  10. Nina – I’ve been following and hoping you were going to be able to save the public bath. There is something about such places that deeply touch the spirit – maybe it’s the water which supports us through generations and makes us lighter in mood. Anyway I’m so sad to hear it was not to be. But brava to you for trying and may your Christmas be full of joy and 2010 full of your wonderful art.

  11. Margaret says:

    So sorry to hear of the fate of the baths. I had hoped to hear a different ending to this story.

  12. interglossa says:

    Nina thanks for covering this in your blog and the always lovely and interesting drawings. In America of course preserving any community or shared resource like a school or pool involves even more struggle and resistance (as our sad health care politics has demonstrated to the world…).

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