Brockwell Lido – a swimming paradise in South London.
Brockwell Lido has been a haven for fans of cold water for many years and our Swimmers Club is an inclusive organisation for people to share their love of this beautiful urban oasis.
To sign up for your FREE membership click here.
- Winter Water Polo Coach needed - OK there is good news and bad news for Winter Water Polo. GOOD NEWS – we’ve found an indoor pool which we can hire every Sunday 4:30pm to 5:30pm in Streatham, September to December. BAD NEWS – we need to find a qualified Water Polo coach and a certified Life Guard. Can you help? Please […]
- Henley Classic 2017 - On Sunday 25th June eight brave Brockwell Swimmers headed for Henley to complete the dawn, laser beamed, 2.1Km, upstream, mad-for-it, Thames swim. Bit of a shock to the system waking up at that unearthly hour, but at least the roads were clear and after just one hour of driving we were there. Very quickly marshaled […]
- Pells Pool to Saltdean Swim/Walk - Make a note in your diary for a coast swim/walk on Saturday 22nd July. We’ll be taking the 9:17am train from London Victoria to Lewes for a swim at the charming Pells Pool lido. Suitably refreshed we’ll then be taking an 9 mile walk along the South Downs Way to the newly re-opened Saltdean Lido. […]
- Tooting Relay Results - The results are in from the Tooting Mid-Summer Relays and our two Teams Brockwell thankfully, despite tradition, did not come last! In fact we came a respectful 12th and 16th out of 22 in our age categories. Well done Gillian , Alexandra, Timothy, David, Kathryn, Paola, Sabrina and Peter for swimming the 4 lengths each […]
- Hastings and all that… - Following a thankful change in weather forecast, Brockwell Swimmers headed for a sunny Hastings to complete the first of our four Walk Swims 2017. The group met at platform 12 St Pancras (some only just making the train) and headed for Three Oaks station via Ashford International to start walk number 25 from the Wild […]
History of Brockwell Lido
The Lido was originally opened in 1937 to replace the natural public bathing ponds in the park. The Lido would remain open during the war, though one swimming gala was cancelled in 1944 due to a feared flying bomb attack. From 1947 to 1968 the London Swimming Championships were also held at Brockwell Lido. However, after much neglect and declining usage, the pool was closed by Lambeth Council in 1990.
For 4 years the pool lay empty until two former council employees, Casey and Paddy, won the management contract and reopened the lido in 1994. “It was a time when we let as many things happen as possible just for fun, not necessarily making money, giving people chance to try things out”. However, the future of the Lido again came into question when mounting maintenance costs forced the duo to resign their tender in 2001.
This sparked a strong campaign by local swimmers who produced a survey containing 4,674 signatures from Brockwell Lido visitors that demonstrated the community’s intense attachment to the space. This forced a dialogue with Lambeth Council, resulting in a new three-way framework involving the council, users, and a site management company.
Various management companies were approached and the winning tender was awarded to Fusion Lifestyle who won a 25 year contract to redevelop and run the site (3 million pounds from Fusion and ½ million pounds from English Heritage).
The main alternation to the building was the moving of the south west wall six metres further into the park. English Heritage chose this solution from a number of options developed by Pollard Edwards Thomas architects. Moving this elevation doubled the size of the old changing rooms allowing Fusion to replace these with a new gym and spa complex, ensuring the economic viability of the lido as a whole. The ‘wet’ changing rooms were then moved next to the new entrance on the south east side. Work was completed in July 2007, just in time for the Summer season and the Lido’s 70th birthday.
At first the pool was only open during the Summer, but with the increased popularity of cold water swimming, the unheated pool is now open all year round. Hurrah! As well as the fabulous pool, the building also contains a gym, sauna, steam room, exercise studios, a very fine café… and some very, very enthusiastic swimmers.
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