Wild swimming facility being ‘explored’ by Enfield Council

The council is looking at options for wild swimming as an alternative to a new lido which the Labour administration pledged to build in its last election manifesto

Wild swimming at Hampstead Heath
Wild swimming at Hampstead Heath

Enfield Council is “exploring options” for introducing a wild swimming facility in the borough.

Wild swimming in lakes and rivers has become increasingly popular in recent years with several parks around London offering facilities, such as Hampstead Heath, while swimmers can now even go for a dip at the Royal Docks in East London.

In Enfield the Labour administration promised to “build an outdoor swimming lido for residents” in its 2022 local election manifesto, however the Dispatch understands that the projected costs of such a project are now considered by the civic centre to be too high.

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Instead, wild swimming is being looked at as a cheaper alternative, with several Enfield parks already boasting large lakes that could be suitable. These include Grovelands Park in Southgate and Broomfield Park in Palmers Green.

A council spokesperson said: “Enfield Council is exploring options for the delivery of the lido in partnership with a number of providers who are interested in the opportunity to deliver exciting new facilities in the borough. Obviously, we will ensure that we obtain best value for residents and the council as part of this process.

“We are also exploring options for wild swimming and will set a budget for this project once an appropriate site has been identified and feasibility work is completed.”

The council has not confirmed which of its parks are being considered such a facility. Wild swimming can only be permitted in water that meets strict quality criteria and it remains to be seen whether existing lakes in Enfield could pass the tests required.

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