The 1956 Melbourne Olympic Games sparked a renewed interest in sport, particularly for children. The Sisters of the Good Shepherd followed the trend by installing tennis and netball courts for the students of St Mary’s in 1958, and in 1968 they built a swimming pool. While mainly used by St Mary’s girls, the pool was available for all of the Convent girls. Still standing are the cream brick toilets and changing rooms to the north of the pool.
The pool fell into disrepair when the Sisters left the site in the late 1970s. Today, the pool has been altered and is now a community space. The general public is welcome to use the playground and tennis/basketball courts outside school hours. Heritage guidelines maintain that all contemporary interventions to the site are reversible, meaning this space can one day perhaps be used again as a swimming pool.
Image by Barbara Fischer, 2009.