New Lido Toolkit to boost the ‘lido revolution’

Published on: February 28th 2024


As the culmination of a major, year-long collaboration supported by The National Lottery
Heritage Fund, Future Lidos launched a new Lido Toolkit today, Wednesday 28th February.

Driven by communities craving the many benefits they bring, the rebirth of lidos has really
gathered pace in the 2020s.

In 2023 – dubbed the ‘Year of the Lido’, precious lidos reopened in Bath and Hull, and the first new outdoor pool since the 1990s opened in Brighton. There was investment in the future of lidos in Ware, Newbury and Tooting, and plans were laid for major redevelopments in Plymouth and Portsmouth. New pools were announced in Ilford, Hackney, Ealing and Ilfracombe. And more and more lidos moved to winter opening, in response to demand.

Already in 2024, the rebirth of Ipswich’s Broomhill Pool has been confirmed; Saltdean Lido has opened its new community library and its ballroom; lido upgrades have been announced in Hampton, Cheltenham and Droitwich; Westmeath council has invited tenders for a new
‘Shannon Pool’, and a community group has stepped in to secure the future of Ilkley Lido.

To boost this ever-growing movement, Future Lidos have created a Lido Toolkit for community groups and councils working to revive or create lidos, and for operators developing their pools for the future. The ultimate goal is to benefit communities across the UK and Ireland who will reap the social and economic rewards of having a pool of their own.


Future Lidos is an informal network of projects across the UK and Ireland, dedicated to bringing the joy of outdoor swimming to more communities by restoring heritage pools and creating new lidos. From a small group formed just three years ago, it has grown to a network of more than 30 projects.


The Toolkit is free to access, and contains a wealth of insight assembled from a wide range of experienced pool operators and project leaders. It includes topics like environmental
sustainability, inclusivity and business development, as well as a range of evidence for the
health, social and economic benefits that lidos bring.


The Toolkit is the centrepiece of Future Lidos’ new website at www.futurelidos.org. For the wider community of lido enthusiasts, the site also includes a map of existing and future lidos across the UK and Ireland.

Project Director Deborah Aydon said: “Lidos are great crucibles of joy, wellbeing and connection. We hope the Toolkit will boost the many future lidos projects, and support lido operators who are developing their pools for the future. We would like to thank everyone who has played a part in this huge collaborative venture, and we are enormously grateful to The National Lottery
Heritage Fund and to National Lottery players for making it possible.”


Chief Executive of the Heritage Fund Eilish McGuinness said: “At the Heritage Fund we are delighted we have supported a renaissance in public love for lidos, by providing more than £13 million towards restoring and celebrating lidos such as Saltdean Lido in Brighton and Cleveland Pools in Bath. Lidos are true public and community spaces, providing health, wellbeing and happiness to all. Our support to Future Lidos for their ‘Pooling Resources’ project has enabled the creation of this invaluable Toolkit to help others build capacity and understanding of lidos so that they can be enjoyed by communities for years to come.”


Future Lidos founder Michael Wood said: “Realising the scale of live independent restoration projects across the UK and Ireland, Future Lidos was designed as a collective, to collaborate, support, research, share and speak with greater consistency, cohesion and authority. This funding has been invaluable, to ensure the broad societal value and demand is evidenced and understood, providing a platform for growth of these public luxuries, supporting vibrant, diverse and healthy communities.”