Books About Swimming

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Rob Fryer's Wild Swimming Guide

The original and most comprehensive wild swimming guide. Over 1600 sites in the Uk and Europe listed and described. Expanded every year to include more swimming place. Inspired by Roger Deakin's Waterlog

SWIMMING AGAINST THE STREAM - 2nd revised Edition 2013

This wide-ranging book explores why swimmers are so unwelcome in England's lakes and rivers, why this needs to change, and what could be done to make it happen.

Waterlog: A Swimmer's Journey Through Britain

Roger Deakin set out in 1996 to swim through the British Isles. The result a uniquely personal view of an island race and a people with a deep affinity for water. From the sea, from rock pools, from rivers and streams, tarns, lakes, lochs, ponds, lidos, swimming pools and spas, from fens, dykes, moats, aqueducts, waterfalls, flooded quarries, even canals, Deakin gains a fascinating perspective on modern Britain. Detained by water bailiffs in Winchester, intercepted in the Fowey estuary by coastguards, mistaken for a suicude on Camber sands, confronting the Corryvreckan whirlpool in the Hebrides, he discovers just how much of an outsider the native swimmer is to his landlocked, fully-dressed fellow citizens. Encompassing cultural history, autobiography, travel writing and natural history, Waterlog is a personal journey, a bold assertion of the native swimmer's right to roam, and an unforgettable celebration of the magic of water.

Hung Out to Dry: Swimming and British Culture

Intriguing and personal take on the history of outdoor swimming in the UK.

Taking the Waters: A Swim around Hampstead Heath

Taking the Waters is a celebration of four unique swimming spots on Hampstead Heath: the Kenwood Ladies’ Pond, the Highgate Men’s Pond, the Mixed Bathing Pond, and the Parliament Hill Lido.

The Henleaze Lake Story

This is an account of Henleaze Lake and Henleaze Swimming Club from the earliest quarrying days (1800s) through to the beginning of the 21st Century. Derek and Joyce tell the story of a magical place, warts and all, and include the immediate surroundings of the Lake property where this is relevant. The book has over 100 illustrations that have been collected over many years.

The Story of Swimming

In recent years, wild swimming - a movement that has inspired people to plunge into river, lake and sea in search of natural or challenging swimming experiences - has become extremely popular in Britain. But this phenomenon is only the latest episode in a long, fascinating and hitherto untold story. Passionate outdoor swimmer Susie Parr sets out to trace the social history of bathing in Britain, from the earliest references in Roman and Anglo Saxon literature to the decline of British seaside resorts and traditional bathing clubs in the late 20th century.


Wild Swimming starts with a whistle-stop tour of wild-swimming past and present - with insights into history, science, society, nature and psychology. Then there's detailed information on how to enjoy one of Britain most traditional's pursuits - a pleasure that is in danger of being lost in our modern world. It will teach you about finding that perfect swimming hole, what to take and how to have fun while staying safe.