On a reasonably nice Sunday morning, but a bit of a busy day ahead. I thought I’d pop somewhere local. So I nipped over to Leytonstone pool. My expectations weren’t particularly high, but for a Sunday swim, it did the job.
Lady behind the desk was well versed. I said I haven’t been there before and she responded, “Go round to the right to the changing rooms, lockers are on the right and take a returnable £1 coin, then continue to follow the corridor to the poolside” Simples.
The pool is a compact 25m, and it was split half into an open swim, half into 4 very thin lanes; 1 medium, 1 fast and 2 with lessons for little ones. The poolside looks nice, with it’s sky blue tiles and little viewing area. Underneath the water it looks a bit grotty, with discoloured patches, but compared to most of the pools (especially 25m ones) it looks quite nice.
The water didn’t feel as though it had too much chlorine in, and there were a couple of nice touches. Instead of a grotty metal ladder to climb in and out, there are stairs into the pool. Also, you are allowed to dive into the 2m deep end, it was quite refreshing to see a sign advising safe diving, rather than just prohibiting it. There is a little ledge about 1.2m down in the deep end, so you can have a little rest at each end if you like.
Of course, this combination of features doesn’t attract your speed(o) demons. The definition of ‘fast’ yet again comes into question, but the leisurely swim is quite nice.
The lifeguards were the most active I have seen, 2 different lifeguards approached people by tapping them on the head with a stick, and instructed them that ‘non-swimmers must not go beyond the red line’ meant they had to be able to swim a full length. I did feel for the poor kids who both attempted and failed at their mission, and returning, shamed, to the shallow end, upset they had let their parents down. What was bit weird was that the children’s pool off to the side did look quite big, probably larger than the area for non-swimmers in the training pool.
The showers were really nice, spacious and warm, but the screaming kids were a bit much. There are only 3 showers with doors and a queue was building up, so it was all a bit rushed. The changing rooms were clean, and there were probably more changing rooms than people you could’ve fitted in the pool.
Overall, it was fine, nothing special but did the job.