Roy - 83 years young

In 1957, aged 24, Roy had just completed his national service in the RAF and was encouraged by a friend to join him for a swim at the local Lido – an open-air fresh water swimming pool.

Tooting born and bred, Roy lived just a short distance from Tooting Bec Lido – the UK’s second largest swimming pool at an exhausting 93m long and 33m wide.


Roy has been swimming there almost every day since, come rain or shine. Now aged 83, there is plenty of evidence to suggest he really hasn't slowed down much since his early twenties! A remarkable portrayal of youthfulness. I joined him one morning as he went about his routine. The water, a mere 12 degrees… 

Roy is a stalwart of the South London Swimming Club. Here he is taking me through some photos inside the club's cabin by the side of the pool .

All set for a swim. 

In go the ear plugs. 

Due to the temperature of the water, many swimmers at the Lido wear a wetsuit. Not Roy... 

There's no easing your way into the pool and climatising before breaking into stroke. It's all in for Roy. 

93 metres to go. 

There is much to be admired about Roy's speed and technique. You wouldn't know he was an 83 year old charging through the water. 


Just another day at the office for Roy. He'll be back tomorrow... 

A massive thank you to Roy for allowing me to photograph him, and hear his story.