No diving? No bombing? No rules swimming
Columnist Matthew Parris has been called “ignorant” and his actions “dangerous” after swimming across London’s River Thames. But up and down the country, people are dipping a toe in the trend for outdoor swimming, writes Tom de Castella.
It’s a sultry July afternoon and about 30 bathers are floating, chatting and breast-stroking their way through the cool, green water. Oak trees, willows and birch overhang the pond, moorhens pick their way across the shallows and a flock of Canada geese swoops down overhead.
If it wasn’t for the brightly coloured bikinis and vigilant lifeguards one might almost mistake it for a pagan immersion ceremony. And yet this is Hampstead Heath, only four miles from central London.
The idyllic scene reflects the growing popularity of “wild swimming”.
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