London, England, UNITED KINGDOM
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Updated April 14, 2020.
Adult Admission Price & Policy
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It is an elegant, attractive, and “protected” i.e. landmarked building that has two pools (one reserved for children and classes) and a spa. The locker room was spotless and modern, as were the showers. Be sure to bring a £1 or a 20p coin for use of the locker – the coin is returned once the key is returned. (The majority use £1 coins). Moisturizer and hair dryers are provided.
There are three, very wide lanes – each for various swimming speeds, and there is ample passing room. It has a curved, attractive, parabolic ceiling with a glass canopy to admit sunlight. This is one of the longest public pools in London. I tended to be there at 9:15 AM and it was not crowded.
Gender-specific locker rooms: lockers require either a 20p or £1 coin deposit (returnable). Don’t be put off by the noise as you approach the pool halls because this will all be emanating from the 25 yard facility which is the province of children. Head for the 33-1/3 yard pool which is usually laned for lap swimming (check the timetable on the facility website – ‘swimfit’ is the operator’s code for a laned environment). On a recent weekday lunchtime visit, there were four speed-differentiated roped lanes, each containing no more than about four swimmers. Although old, the pool is well-maintained, is perfectly clean, and is suitable for those wanting a serious workout. The only drawback that I could see is the fact that, by virtue of its age, distances are denominated in the now long discontinued standard of yards, not metres. 33 lengths is near enough equivalent to 1,000 metres.
Having had your swim, if you have time to spare, and want to sweat and/or sleep, the attached Art Deco Turkish Baths are really worth a visit. Men and women are accommodated on alternate days, so you will need to check the timetable.