It is not known when people first began swimming in the Hampstead ponds, although it is thought that William Blake was referring to bathing in the ponds in his poem Jerusalem written sometime between 1804-1820. He writes: ‘The Ponds where boys to bathe delight’. At a similar time, John Constable painted Hampstead Heath, with Pond and Bathers, 1821 which depicts bathers enjoying wild swimming.
Won through an invited competition in 2021, we have been appointed to improve access and ensure inclusivity across the three swimming ponds on the Heath. The interventions will seek to retain the ponds’ natural beauty.
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