This is Ilkley

Ilkley Lido Opens for Summer 2018

Ilkley Lido opened for the 2018 season on Saturday 26th May, with a discounted open day. The family fun day kicked off at 10am, and swimmers braved the traditionally bracing conditions for just £2. The price was the same regardless of age for the opening session.

Ilkley Lido 2018 Opening Hours

The Ilkley Lido opening times are:

  • Monday to Friday – 8am-10am, 12pm to 6:30pm
  • Weekends – 10am – 5:30pm

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The lido charges full price at peak times, which are between 10am and 6pm. Here’s what you’ll pay:

  • Adults – £7.90
  • Junior or Senior – £3.90
  • With Bradford Leisure Card – £3.90
  • With Junior Bradford Leisure Card – £1.95

There are also off peak prices, before 9am Monday to Wednesday, 8:30am on Thursdays and 9am on Fridays. They are:

  • Adults – £4.65
  • Junior or Senior – £2.45
  • With Bradford Leisure Card – £2.30
  • With Junior Bradford Leisure Card – £1.25

Ilkley Lido Sign

What to Expect at Ilkley Lido

Ilkley Lido is stunning. Absolutely gorgeous. The pool and facilities themselves are beautiful, but the scenery is equally captivating. You can float on your back and stare up at the majesty of Ilkley Moor and the Cow and Calf. This is what makes it so special.

Ilkley Lido View

However, it is absolutely freezing cold, even when the air temperature hits the mid-20s. This should not be a surprise; you’re outside in Yorkshire wearing essentially just your underwear. There’s very few occasions on which that is a good idea. But the advantages of swimming at Ilkley Lido far outweigh the chilliness and, as with any outside dip, you soon get used to it.

I remember taking to the waters of the lido about ten years ago. On browsing the Friends of Ilkley Lido website afterwards, I took part in a poll in which you voted for the one single change that you felt would improve Ilkley Lido. On viewing the running results, ‘heating’ was the clear leader with roughly 98% of the vote.

That has not happened, but it would surely ruin the experience if ever it did. It’s our lido and we like it cold. Or at least we are now accustomed to it being cold and we’re from Yorkshire so we’re stubborn. Heating’s for them southerners and their inferior lidos.


Pool Temperature Rules

Ilkley Lido is open for longer than originally expected, but there are rules based around the pool temperature.

  • When the lido temperature drops below 15 degrees, you are advised to wear a wetsuit.
  • If it drops below 10 degrees, the lido will close until next year.

Ilkley Lido History

The lido opened in May 1935, scheduled to coincide with celebrations for George V’s silver jubilee celebrations. Archibald Skinner designed the pool in his capacity as Ilkley’s water engineer. There are only four public open-air pools remaining in Yorkshire including Ilkley Lido, which makes sense. Because it’s Yorkshire. Not the Caribbean.

The diving board that once entertained Ilkley’s bravest souls is no longer there, but is fondly remembered.

It has been a popular destination for summer bathers and picnickers for more than 80 years now and shows no signs of slowing down as it begins another season. It will likely be open until September now, although that could change depending on weather and demand.

If you are heading there this weekend, enjoy yourself, but make sure you don’t take the advice of this BBC Leeds presenter:

About Jim Coulson 36 Articles
I'm Jim, I live in Burley-in-Wharfedale with my wife, two kids and a dog. This leaves me at least ten minutes a week to write incisive web content.

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