Open Water Swimming
Swimming at Stanwick Lakes
With over a dozen lakes and beautiful scenery, Stanwick Lakes seems like the perfect place for open water swimming.
As a nature reserve, and a designated SSSI (Site of Special Scientific Interest), we have been working closely with Natural England and we now have approval to offer open water swimming sessions.
We have also achieved a Water Quality Results Certificate with “Pass – Excellent” results.
There are five confirmed dates running through the Summer season, with sessions held on Friday evenings. If you’re interested in visiting us to enjoy this invigorating and increasingly popular sport, please read on.
But first, the serious stuff…
We ask that all swimmers understand the following, and there will also be on-the-day disclaimers for each session.
Participating in open water swimming requires fitness and skill. I confirm that I have done sufficient training to ensure that I am fit enough to cope with the demands of open water swimming and that my technical skills are adequate for the activity. I accept that taking part is by its nature hazardous and contains certain inherent risks and I accept that I owe a significant duty of care to Rockingham Forest Trust and its organising partner(s) as well as to other swimmers, to act responsibly and follow all safety instructions. This includes but is not limited to:
– Only entering the water when given the all clear to do so by the session leader
– Wearing a brightly coloured swim hat at all times when in the water
– Wearing a wetsuit and/or tow float
– Following the prescribed swim course
– Complying with the instruction to exit the water at the end of my current lap in the event of a course evacuation or the end of the session (signalled by an air horn)
– Being aware of other swimmers and summoning assistance if I notice a swimmer in difficulty.
I confirm that I, or those I book on behalf of, meet the age requirements set out by Rockingham Forest Trust and its organising partner(s).
I accept that in the event of my requiring medical attention, Rockingham Forest Trust (RFT) and its organising partner(s) take no responsibility for the treatment provided for any unreported existing condition which increases the risk of a medical emergency. I acknowledge that RFT has relied on this statement (in its entirety) in accepting my participation in the open water sessions at Stanwick Lakes and that if I was unable or unwilling to agree to all the matters set out above in this statement of responsibility RFT would not allow me to participate. All statements of fact are true.
I understand I will be asked to review and agree to up to date Participant Disclaimers on the day of any swim.
OK, now that bit is out the way, it’s just a matter of getting the final logistics in place and the conditions being right on the day…!
There are circumstances when it may not be possible to go ahead with a swim session. We hope we can communicate arrangements in good time, but sometimes it might be last minute, as safety checks for open water swimming are always ongoing, whether it is due to water testing, weather conditions or volunteer numbers. We will do everything we can to get the latest news to you as soon as possible.
Open Water Sessions at Stanwick Lakes:
Sessions must be booked in advance.
Dates (book below):
Friday 16th June
Friday 30th June
Friday 21st July
Friday 18th August
Friday 1st September
Swim Session 1: 6.00pm – 7.00pm
Swim Session 2: 7.00pm – 8.00pm
Single swim – £6.50
Parking charges apply.
Tow float policy:
All swimmers must use a tow float.
A brightly coloured swim hat MUST be worn by all swimmers. Swimmers are advised it’s best to have more than one option as varying light conditions make different colours easier/harder to be seen by the safety team. This may result in a hat being accepted one week and a swimmer asked to change it another week, this is for the swimmers safety. Swimmers are best to avoid blues and white.
The use of wetsuits is advisable for all swimmers when temperatures are between 11°C – 14°C. If the temperature is above 14°C, then wetsuits are optional.
Please note: There is NO wetsuit or tow float rental at Stanwick Lakes.
What is the minimum age for organised open water swimming at Stanwick Lakes
No swimmers under 12 years old are permitted to swim, this may be reviewed for following seasons.
12 – 16 Years participation:
- Is by prior arrangement with the Swim Director, please email email@example.com to gain permission.
- There must be a responsible adult aged 18 with the consent of the Parent/ Legal guardian on site who must be appropriately positioned to be constantly watching the young person in the water.
- Wetsuits and bright coloured swim cap are compulsory
16 – 18 Years participation is subject to having written permission from parent / legal guardian.
What kit do I need?
Wetsuits/Swim Hats and tow float policy
There is NO wetsuit or tow float rental.
Swim Hats – A brightly coloured swim hat MUST be worn by all swimmers. Swimmers are advised it’s best to have more than one option as varying light conditions make different colours easier/harder to be seen by the safety team. This may result in a hat being accepted one week and a swimmer asked to change it another week, this is for the swimmers safety. Swimmers are best to avoid blues and white.
Wetsuits – The use of wetsuits is advisable for all swimmers when temperatures are between 11°C – 14°C. If the temperature is above 14°C, then wetsuits are optional. All swimmers must use a tow float.
Can I bring my dog?
Whilst on-lead dogs are welcomed at Stanwick Lakes, we do not allow dogs to swim in the lake with swimmers. Any swimmers bringing dogs with them must ensure they are suitably looked after whilst the swimmer is in the water. This is the swimmer’s responsibility.
What facilities are available during Open Water Swimming sessions?
The Stanwick Lakes visitor centre will be open before sessions, where there are toilet facilities. The visitor centre will remain open until 8.15pm for swimmers to change.
There are also outside toilet facilities and very limited outside shower facilities available.
How much are car parking charges?
Car parking charges will apply, please see here for the charges. We encourage swimmers to consider becoming members at Stanwick Lakes. This provides year round, unlimited parking for two registration plates at a cost of £42.00 and all income generated by this scheme goes to towards the management and upkeep of the Lakes.
What is the cancellation policy?
In the event that a swimmer needs to cancel their booked swim, please contact the events team who will endeavour to re-sell the space – firstname.lastname@example.org . If the space cannot be-resold, we will not refund the ticket cost. There is no cancellation option within 48 hours of the booked swim.
On arrival, please check in at the Visitor Centre.
Open water swimming at Stanwick Lakes is designated to Brightwater Lakes at the designated times only.
Brightwater Lake is located less than a 5 minute walk from the Visitor Centre.
Due to the nature reserve being an SSSI, wild swimming is prohibited anywhere else on site, and outside of Open Water Swimming session times.
Open Water Swimming sessions must be pre-booked.
As tickets are on sale, by booking, you agree to the Participant Disclaimer and agree to signing a hardcopy disclaimer on the day.