Louise Downe

Nudity permitted

I’ve been spending a lot of time at the London Fields Lido this week. Some long overdue downtime between projects, not just because I have a not-so-secret ambition to live the life of a Miami pensioner.

I’ve started to notice something strange about our local pool in that time, and that’s that people don't go there to swim.

Our pool is a pickup hotspot, as you might expect, but it’s also a popular place to breastfeed.

In fact, our swimming pool is a place to be ‘naked’. Free from gravity, ties, suits and heels. No more intellectual meritocracy, and for the breastfeeding mums, no more being the only one you’re trying to avoid eye contact with.

Pools, like most spaces we create for ‘leisure’, exist outside of the kind of normal behavioural structures we create for the survival of ‘civilisation’, and they’re bloody fascinating.