Cause for celebration’

Leicester City was once celebrated for its great swimmers. There were 4 lido’s built right into the river or canal and Olympic champions such as John Jarvis swam straight out of these waters and into the record books. Sadly as pollution increased, an end was brought to joys of wild swimming in Leicester. Otters (who thrive only in clean water) have been missing from Leicester for over 30 years. But according to the Environment Agency; river water quality has improved year on year for the last two decades. In fact things have improved so much that Adrian lane, a Senior Riverside Officer for Leicester City Council, was quoted in yesterdays BBC Leicester report as saying: “the return of the otters after over 30 years was a positive indication.”

If the waters are clean enough for otters one could ask; are they clean enough for people? As the country’s first Environment City we wait to see whether the freedom to swim in Leicester’s historic waters will be granted in 2011.

wild swimming leicester lido

The Bede House Lido Leicester

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