The King’s Cross fresh water Pond: separating the men from the boys


There would have been some board room meeting at some point, where the one who’d birthed this brain child would have pitched their idea to the decision makers. “Let’s build an outdoor swimming bath with pure water which will be untouched by chlorine, but filtered by plants which are in the water with the swimmers instead!”

Cue a load of blank faces.

“…we’d be building it in London?”

The room erupts into applause.

Once again, this magical city plays host to a wonderfully innovative but truly wack-job concept and we went along to King’s Cross Pond to check it out. It wasn’t particularly sunny -well, shortly after we left it rained – so the thick grey clouds didn’t help set the scene of a romantic, mid-summer Costa Del King’s Cross swim. Neither did the pool showers. Good God those showers. We’d been told to ‘shower properly’, in other words, not like a pubescent teenage boy’s half-bothered attempt, as in, fully get in there and wash yourself down like a pro. The showers were all shades of freezing – Tom put his head under (the lunatic) and he said his brain felt like an ice cube. It was at this stage where I folded.



Dipping our toes in the pool was …bracing. Tom impressed me no-end by manning up and getting the hell in, no questions asked. Well, actually, he was being coaxed into the abyss by a trio of more-mature ladies who were gleefully splashing around whilst enthusing about how ‘invigorating’ it was. So really, Tom had actually decided that he couldn’t be upstaged by someone’s Grandmother and so, in he went.

I was a lot less willing. At first, Tom wasn’t overly keen on the submerging experience. Just to be clear, any negative feelings that either of us showed during our pond run-in all came back to one thing: the temperature of the water. However, as time went on whilst he swam around like a happy frog, he assured me that the whole experience was growing on him and that he was starting to quite enjoy it. Really? “Only because I can’t really feel anything now…” he explained.

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I pulled the towel tighter around me at the mere sight of him breast-stroking those waters.

Eventually, he was tootling around with a grin on his face, having fun in the King’s Cross Pond. Seeing this one-eighty, I decided to give it another chance. I waded in until the chill was up to my knees and decided that that was enough. It was absolutely freezing, I couldn’t feel my toes and I remembered how much I’ve always hated being cold/being in cold water/generally not being warm. I know, I’m a massive kill-joy, but I’d just rather be in a …warmer pool.



We left to get changed and reflected on the whole experience. Tom had quite enjoyed it. I’d thought it was utterly rubbish.

I can see kids getting involved with this pool – they’re well hardy, they’ll put up with anything. And Dads – they’ll just jump in without making a fuss. In fact, I can see the majority of London falling in love with this kooky little swimming pool as the weather gets warmer.

Really, in hindsight, I think that actually it’s probably just me being a massive wuss. Oh well. Least I’m honest.









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