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Designs of proposed new lido in Ilford revealed with gym and dance studio

 (Redbridge Council)
(Redbridge Council)

Initial designs for a new lido and fitness hub in Valentine’s Park, Ilford, have been unveiled as a public consultation on the proposed six-lane outdoor pool opens.

Redbridge Council is inviting residents to give feedback this week on the proposed new designs, which include a 25-metre outdoor swimming pool, cafe, gym, dance studio and outdoor picnic area.

The complex would be built close to the borough’s original lido, which was used by families between 1923 and 1995.

Redbridge council has vowed to have the pool open by August next year. It’s one of three proposed new lidos planned in the capital amid a surge in popularity for outdoor swimming in recent years.

Waltham Forest council is planning a lido on a sports field in Leyton, while Hackney council wants to create a beginner’s pool at a “wild swimming” reservoir in Stoke Newington.

Redbridge Council said it plans to ensure the lido in Ilford is “sustainable and cost-efficient” and anticipates that the outdoor pool will generate enough income to cover its costs once it is open.

Local residents can see the initial designs during two public consultations on Wednesday and Thursday at Redbridge Central Library.

The proposed new lido would also include changing facilities, a children’s splash pad and meeting room.

 (Redbridge Council)
(Redbridge Council)

Councillor Kam Rai, Deputy Leader of Redbridge Council and Cabinet Member for Finance and Regeneration, said: “We’re continuing to invest in leisure facilities so local families and visitors can access everything they need right on our doorstep.

“The new lido will provide a sustainable, fun, and social place for people to exercise in the great outdoors while boosting our local economy and restoring the heritage of Valentines Park.”

The lido, which “will not be more than £4m max”, is part of an £11m council investment in leisure facilities, Redbridge leader Jas Athwal told the Standard in April.

“It’s about taking a public health approach, whether it’s violent crime or health or inequality, and making sure we have leisure as an offer,” he said at the time.

“It’s exciting times. Valentine’s Park is regularly voted as one of the 10 best parks in the capital. Money isn’t plentiful, but we want to show we are not here to manage decline and, even in the depths of the financial constraints that councils operate under, we can offer a glimmer of hope to residents.”

To find out more about the lido, visit the council website.