About Divers Cove

Divers Cove is a beautiful 7.3-acre reservoir formerly used for sand extraction in Godstone, Surrey. Due to the lake’s natural biodiversity and sandy bottom, the water quality is exceptional. It glows a beautiful turquoise green in the summer or winter sun making the site a wonderful place to participate in the various leisure activities we offer.

We have two swim circuits available – 450m and 650m both clearly marked by large buoys. All sessions are operated by our fully trained open water lifeguards.

Outdoor Swimming Frequently Asked Questions

How can I cancel my Introduction to Open Water Swimming Course?

You can cancel by logging into your account, navigating to the My Account area, and clicking Cancel Bookings.

What is open water swimming?

Open water swimming is a supervised swimming activity which takes place outside of a standard swimming pool environment. Wild swimmers at Divers Cove enjoy a relatively informal swim (around a marked course) in natural lake water.

How cold will the water be?

When open water swimming the temperature will vary from March through to September. Early in the season when the water is below 14℃ you will really need to slowly acclimate your body to the coldness of the water to be safe. As the water heats up through the year and reaches around 18℃ it’s chilly but if you keep moving you will start to feel warmer.  As the water reaches over 21℃ in our summer months the water will quickly start to feel warmer as you are in it.

Can I cancel my swim booking?

You can cancel your booking for free via your online account as long as you provide 48hrs notice. If cancelling within 48 hours you will be charged for your booking as we have limited swim sessions available at each session and we may be unable to resell your ticket. Log into your account and click on Cancel Booking.

How old do I need to be to swim at Divers Cove?

Competent children over 7 years of age can swim with us if they are capable of swimming 650m unaided but must be accompanied by an adult in the water at all times and must swim with a tow float. A Pay As You Swim membership is best for children – a one off £2 registration fee followed by £9.90 per swim session.

Do I need a tow float?

You only require a tow float if you are swimming without a wetsuit or are under 16 years of age. You can hire or buy two floats from us. You can also hire wetsuits on-site from just £10 per session.

Do I need a wetsuit?

All swimmers require a wetsuit when the water temp is under 16 C unless you are experienced at swimming in cold water. If swimming without a wetsuit you must wear a tow float. You can hire a wetsuit on-site for just £10 per session.

What sort of wetsuit should I buy for open water swimming?

Wetsuits come in different thicknesses and the thicker they are the warmer they keep you. 

The fit of your wetsuit should be comfortable ‘snug’ with no wrinkles and creases when you are standing upright. You should be able to comfortably take a full-depth breath when wearing your outdoor swimming wetsuit.  When it comes to the material opt for rubber as opposed to fabric, you may see manufacturers and eCommerce stores referring to them as triathlon wetsuits, triwear, wiggle suits or open water swimming wetsuits. You can hire a wetsuit on-site for just £10 per session.

Do I need a swim hat?

Yes, all swimmers must wear a brightly coloured swim hat at all times. You can hire or buy swim hats from us on arrival. This is to ensure the visibility and safety of all swimmers at all times.

Do all sessions need to be pre-booked?

Yes, you will need to pre-book all sessions on the website before you are able to come down to the Cove for a wild swim.  You can now swim at Divers Cove on a pay-as-you-swim basis.  Either sign up for a Gold or Silver membership (and enjoy reduced-rate swims) or pay as you swim (with a one £2 admin/registration fee)

Can I bring my children down to paddle?

No, unfortunately, we are only open to members who class themselves as capable swimmers, able to swim a minimum of 450m without stopping. Children must be over 7 years of age, a member and a capable swimmer.

How much is the introduction to the swimming course?

The course is £25 and lasts for 1 hour. Learn more about our courses.

Do you offer trial sessions?

We don’t offer a trial session as all swimmers must be signed up as members and have a pre-booked swim session to conform to our safety procedures. You are welcome to come to one of our sessions and look around the site. Check out our membership options here.

Am I allowed to bring my dog?

No, unfortunately, we do not allow dogs on site.  This is to protect our natural wildlife and bird life down at the shore.

Do all wild swimmers need to be members?

No – you can now swim at Divers Cove on a pay-as-you-swim basis.  Either sign up for a Gold or Silver membership (and enjoy reduced-rate swims) or pay as you swim (with a one £2 admin/registration fee), and get yourself down to the Cove on a sunny day. To upgrade your membership from Pay As You Swim or Silver simply email: diverscoveupgrades@childsey.com and we will be able to assist you in upgrading your membership. 

How can I upgrade my membership

To upgrade your membership from Pay As You Swim or Silver simply email: diverscoveupgrades@childsey.com and we will be able to assist you in upgrading your membership. 

Do you have any tips for first-time open water swimmers?

It is key to develop a good sighting technique, as knowing where you’re going is a lot more difficult than following a lane in the pool. It’s also important to acclimate yourself to the temperature of the water.  For more information please check out our Introduction to Open Water Swimming courses.

What should I do if I get tired while swimming in the lake?

We have swimming marshalls at every session, keeping track of swimmers. If you’re just tired but don’t need assistance, rolling onto your back is a good way to save energy and have a rest. If you decide you do need help, whilst on your back raise your arm and our safety team will be able to assist you. If starting out, it’s important to understand your limits and stay close to the lakeshore.

How long are the open water swimming sessions?

Each swimming session is one hour long. You can spend time at the Cove after your swim by warming up at our onsite cafe serving hot and cold drinks and delicious food.  We regularly have pizza nights where a local artisan bakery cooks stone-baked pizzas onsite to be enjoyed after a refreshing dip in the lake. Facilities include a mixed shower block, male and female heated changing rooms with lockers, male and female toilets and onsite parking.

What is a competent swimmer when it comes to outdoor swimming?

All swimmers must be able to comfortably swim a minimum of 450m without stopping.

Can the lake water make me ill while swimming outdoors?

Lake water is natural water which may contain bacteria harmful to the health if ingested, therefore we recommend not ingesting the water as you swim. (We do carry out regular water tests to ensure the water is as safe as possible for you to swim in)

Can I swim in the lake all year round?

Yes, our Gold & Silver members can swim all year round including the winter months. All of our memberships run annually, meaning that you can enjoy a year of swims within our Summer season from the date of signing up.  To swim when the water gets much colder through the Winter is only for Gold & Silver members who have taken the time over months to swim very regularly and fully acclimatise their bodies to cold water.

Lake Rules: While Open Water Swimming at Divers Cove

  • All swimmers must have a pre-booked session to be allowed entry.
  • All swim sessions will start and finish at the time booked.
  • No swimmer is to enter the water before our safety team has taken to the water and advised you to enter.
  • Children of 7 years and older are allowed to swim in the lake if accompanied by an adult and can demonstrate they are experienced at open water swimming. 
  • Children are not permitted to play on the beach or pontoon at any time. Divers Cove does not permit paddling sessions.
  • All swimmers must wear a wetsuit when the water temperature is 16c or below unless agreed with management. If swimming without a wetsuit (when the water temperature is OVER 16c) you must wear a tow float. (Our website is updated daily with current water temps)
  • A brightly coloured swim hat must be worn at all times in the water so that you can be seen. 
  • If, at any time, you hear a loud hooter/whistle being sounded you must immediately leave the water at the nearest exit point. You should stay on land and make your way back to the beach area to await further instructions. Raise your arm for attention if you cannot make it back to land.
  • Please swim responsibly, respectfully and know your limits. 
  • If you see anyone in trouble you must alert a member of the safety team as quickly as possible. 
  • Swimmers must stick to the swim courses set out by coloured buoys.
  • Swimmers should swim parallel to the bank when possible. 
  • If staff ask you to leave the water please do so immediately (your safety is our priority).
  • Safety cover will be provided at all sessions and this will not be below the required minimum standard identified in the venue risk assessment. 
  • Try not to ingest water whilst swimming.
  • When on land footwear must be worn at all times. 
  • Cover all cuts and abrasions, however minor, with sticking plasters. Do not swim if you have deep cuts. 
  • In the unlikely event that you develop any flu-like symptoms after swimming with an open cut/wound please tell your doctor that you have been swimming in open water. 
  • A first aid kit and the defibrillator will be on site. 
  • Any accidents no matter how small must be reported to staff and will be logged.
  • Children under 16 years of age must be accompanied by an adult in and out of the water at all times.
  • Personal belongings are left at your own risk whilst on site.
  • Cars are parked at your own risk, please be considerate when parking.