City Corporation to reopen Hampstead Heath swimming facilities this weekend

Hampstead Heath’s four outdoor swimming facilities will re-open on Saturday morning following new government COVID-19 guidelines announced yesterday – with a new online booking system.

The City Corporation recently announced its recovery plan to safely reopen the Heath’s Ladies’, Men’s and Mixed Bathing Ponds as well as the Parliament Hill Fields Lido, and tests have been carried out.

A new online booking system will help safely manage numbers and give as many people as possible an opportunity to swim whilst respecting social distancing.

Lifeguards have received specialist training with adaptations to allow them to maintain social distancing if they need to assist swimmers in the water. Staff are bringing in enhanced cleaning and new signage to assist swimmers with the new COVID-19 safety measures.

Swimming will initially be limited to early morning sessions as the City Corporation tests the new safety procedures. If the weekend public sessions run smoothly and safely, additional swimming sessions will be added to allow for more swimmers to access the Ponds and the Lido. In line with Government guidance, sessions must be pre-booked on the Hampstead Heath website.

Anne Fairweather, Chair of the City of London Corporation’s Hampstead Heath Management Committee, said:

“We are delighted to begin safely reopening Heath’s swimming facilities after getting the green light from the Government, who responded to our call to allow outdoor pools to open swiftly.

“This is welcome news to the hundreds of thousands of Londoners who enjoy the bathing ponds and Lido every year.

“We are asking all swimmers to respect the new safety arrangements, and recognise that we have limited capacity with these COVID-secure restrictions, as we welcome people back.”

More details can be found on the Hampstead Heath website here.

The City Corporation protects 11,000 acres of green space in the capital, which includes Hampstead Heath, Epping Forest, West Ham Park, Burnham Beeches, and over 200 smaller sites in the Square Mile.

The City Corporation funds its open spaces with over £29 million a year. They include important wildlife habitats, Sites of Special Scientific Interest, and National Nature Reserves. They are protected from being built on by special legislation.


Notes to Editors:

The City of London Corporation is the governing body of the Square Mile dedicated to a vibrant and thriving City, supporting a diverse and sustainable London within a globally-successful UK.

Proposed swim session times:

Parliament Hill Fields Lido:

    • Session 1 – 07.00 – 08.00
    • Session 2 – 08.30 – 09.30 Highgate Men’s Bathing Pond:
    • Session 1 - 07.00 - 08.00
    • Session 2 - 08.30 - 09.30

Kenwood Ladies’ Bathing Pond:

    1. Session 1 - 07.00 - 08.00
    2. Session 2 - 08.30 - 09.30

Hampstead Mixed Pond:

    • Session 1 – 07.00 – 08.00
    • Session 2 - 08.30 - 09.30
  • A session at the bathing ponds will be £4 for an adult and £2.40 for a concession. 
  • A session at the Lido is £4 for an adult and £2.40 for a concession. 

Proposed swimming numbers per session are - 85 at the Parliament Hill Fields Lido, 30 at the Men’s Pond, 30 at the Ladies’ Pond and 20 at the Mixed Pond.

Interview and filming enquires for Saturday 11 July contact :

Shani Annand-Baron

Media Officer (Planning and Transportation)

City of London Corporation

020 7332 3946 / 07710 860885