Hampstead Highgate Ponds – the birth of a famous diving club

Hampstead Highgate Ponds saw A.E. Dickin-National Plain Diving Champion - image

Hampstead Highgate Ponds.  A.E. Dickin-National Plain Diving Champion 1929 Courtesy of the ASA “In the Swim” 

Hampstead Highgate Ponds was famous for its tall wooden diving stage.  

This  set the scene ready for the divers.  It all started with a swimming and diving club in 1903 called the “Highgate Lifebouys”

Hampstead Highgate Ponds 1928 saw the formation of a famous diving club, which set the scene for future clubs.
War brought the clubs activities virtually to a standstill, but 1945 saw former members flocking back again.

The Highgate divers became a famous band of people.  Their thrilling aqua shows including both serious aspects of diving and hilarious comedy acts. They attracted the crowds wherever they went! As far as the competitive side of the sport of diving,  members of the Highgate Diving Club usually topped the leader board and held many trophies to their credit.

Hampstead Highgate Ponds. Olympic Team giving Display - image

Olympic Team giving Display at Hampstead Highgate Ponds. Click on Pathe clip.

Highgate divers contributed to many grand openings of lidos.  The picture link to the side shows wonderful footage of the Olympic Team 1920s training at Highgate Ponds.
Hampstead Highgate Ponds - Divers travelled the Country.- image


The Highgate Divers were called to give displays all over the country.  They thrilled the crowds with their spectacular performances including hilarious comical displays.

‘Hello, my name is Malcolm England, I am trying to trace for my grandchildren some history about my father, who dived with’ The Swallows’ in the 1920’s.
I have a old photo of him, his name was Albert Charles England.
Any information you have or pictures etc, we would be very great full for.
Do so hope there is something out there that refers to him, our photo has Planet news Ltd on the back.
Regards Malcolm England’

‘Let ’em keep coming’

‘Hi Anne,
Above photos of my fathers time at Highgate Diving Club. Some of these are from newspaper articles, Planet News Ltd who we have asked for any others they may have, will let you know if anything comes from it
Malcolm England’

The divers used the Ponds as their training base,  and nurtured many aspiring UK Diving Champions – many of whom represented the country at International events.

The ponds were divided into mens and ladies bathing  – divinely beautiful, and enticing for relaxation and re charging batteries.

By 1949, the divers had switched to training in London – but…indoors! The memories of most lidos live on,  but multi- generations of Highgate divers remain today and aiming as high as their ancestors


ponds in Hampstead. Home to the original Highgate Divers

Hampstead Highgate Ponds plus site of the diving boards.  Google earth enlarge + 

OUTCOME: The high diving stage at Highgate Ponds, Parliament Hill, were removed long ago. 

The ponds are still used for bathing and remain Ladies and Gentlemans ponds!  Remains a  peaceful setting .  A get away from busy lives but….there always has to be some unrest creep in at some point.   The following equates to this…..   



Still a beauty relaxing spot for swimming wildly,  but once renouned for its diving stage,  all gone now.  Who enjoys this idyllic spot for swimming

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