Many of the UK’s 100 plus lidos are seasonal, and in the depths of winter they hibernate under a silent blanket of leaves. We all miss them, but the colder months can be an ideal opportunity for a lido road trip to get your fix at a year round pool. The number of pools opening year round is growing, slowly but steadily, and for those of us who dread the winter retreat to the indoor fish tank this can only be a good thing.
If you want to keep the sky above you, even while the weather is raging, this round up of year round pools will help you get your fresh air fix. Opening hours can vary wildly during the winter months, so refer to the websites for the latest news.
A glitzy, privately run oasis of blue in the heart of the city. Pricey, at £20 for a 3-hour session, but worth it for a winter treat. Heated to around 23c, and use of the sauna, steam room and hot tub are included.
@lidobristolVISIT WEBSITE »
A fabulous 50m pool in south London. Charlton will suit the serious swimmer and the splash-about dipper in equal measure; heated to around 25c.
@charltonlidoVISIT WEBSITE »
A 25m pool that has recently been re-lined, and is now looking super smart. Worth indulging in some backstroke in the hope of catching a glimpse of red kites circling overhead.
@cheshammoorgymVISIT WEBSITE »
Formerly derelict, this 50m pool is now a fine example of its kind and further refurbishment is currently under way. Re-opening has already been pushed back once, and no anticipated date has been given. Watch the website for updates.
@LondonFieldLidoVISIT WEBSITE »
A rooftop 25m pool in the heart of London, nestled between apartments and the sky. Often busy, but always worth it.VISIT WEBSITE »
One or two sessions a day, depending on the day of the week. See the published timetable for this 33m lido; plenty on site to keep the whole family busy while you swim.
@PR_PoolsFitnessVISIT WEBSITE »
This 33.3m pool is in its second year of winter opening and appears to be making a raging success of it. After dark the underwater lighting is breathtakingly beautiful.
@WycombeRyeLidoVISIT WEBSITE »
One of only 3 lidos in Scotland New Cumnock reopened this summer after a superb refit. Currently open, and with hopes to stay open year round. If travelling far, please contact them in advance to check opening. They respond quickly to direct messages through the Facebook page or their contact details can be found on the Dumfries House website.
@NewCumnockPoolVISIT WEBSITE »
This 50m pool is blessed with one of the best lido cafes there is, and a poolside sauna. Brockwell natives are fiercely passionate about their home pool, and it’s easy to see why. So make sure you plan in plenty of time when visiting.
@Brockwell_LidoVISIT WEBSITE »
One of Devon’s gems, rescued against the odds by the local community. Cold water sessions on Saturday mornings, with excellent cake available. This pool runs on a financial knife-edge, so show them a lot of love.
@bflpoolVISIT WEBSITE »
Beautifully renovated to show off the clean and simple lines of the Grade II listed 50m pool and buildings. Call ahead if travelling as outdoor pool opens on restricted hours in winter.
@HillingdonSLCVISIT WEBSITE »
A spectacular stainless steel liner puts this 66m pool in a league of its own. In the depths of winter it feels like swimming in an iceberg. No frills changing area, but a good-sized sauna more than makes up for that.
@LidoPHVISIT WEBSITE »
This 50m pool is heated. But only to 12 degrees; that’s cold enough to put it in the unheated section. Sadly the flumes aren’t open in winter but it’s still well worth a visit.
@guildfordlidoVISIT WEBSITE »
This beautiful pool in the Peak District has extended its heated season to the end of October, then gradually reduces the temperature becoming unheated in December. A great community run pool, with a smashing café.VISIT WEBSITE »
Now in its second year of winter swimming at weekends. Hot showers and catering are available, and sometimes a fire pit to warm your hands after a swim. Watch the website for confirmation of whether the sessions will continue after Christmas.VISIT WEBSITE »
Back in action for cold water swimming on Sunday mornings from 9am ‘til noon. Watch their social media for details of whether sessions will continue after Christmas – and for confirmation of their Christmas dip plans.
@PortisheadLidoVISIT WEBSITE »
If you prefer your water salty sea pools are good news for the winter swimmer. Bude Sea Pool, Clevedon Marine Lake and Walpole Bay Sea Pool are all open year round. Tunnels Beaches in Ilfracombe has previously opened on New Years Day, but do call ahead to check if travelling.
Lidos opening occasionally in winter include Sandford Parks and Lido Ponty. Tooting Bec opens in winter on a members only basis, as does Ilkley. Helmsley has joined the cold water fold this year, with weekend cold water sessions in the early part of the winter season. Check their website if travelling, as these sessions wind up soon.
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