Staff at Mosely Road Baths in Birmingham have turned a problem into an opportunity by opening their doors to cold water swimmers for a limited time only. When a broken extractor fan a few weeks back meant that the pool couldn’t be heated, the pool was opened up for cold swimming enthusiasts to get their fix in a different way.
The four sessions held so far have been incredibly popular and have attracted an array of swimmers of different ages and backgrounds. With another two weeks of closure forecasted, more cold sessions are being offered.
Anji Page, the pool’s Swim Coordinator, is a keen outdoor swimmer and coach herself and is excited by the opportunity to help spread the joy of cold swimming to a wider section of the public. She has enjoyed the positive feedback from the public, including that cold swimming gives them a sense of euphoria, makes them smile and helps them get a good night’s sleep. She commented: “I can’t tell you how much I’m loving how much people are loving it. It makes my heart melt.
The historic Edwardian pool was opened in 1907 and much like many community pools around the country, has unfortunately been threatened with closure. After being taken over from the council by a community interest company, the pool now largely relies on volunteers to run day-to-day.
Offering these unique sessions is a way for the pool to be creative in keeping the flow of swimmers coming. To cover the cost of the extra lifeguard needed on duty, sessions are a little higher in cost than a normal session, but tea and cakes are being offered to warm up afterwards.