News & Events

view taken from the west towards the Blue Lagoon

August 2011

Summer is here!

At last we’ve got some warm & sunny weather.  Shame we’re not able to open Hilsea Lido yet.

July 2011

We Did It!

Phew!  The Adventure College have moved in and are now based at Hilsea Lido.  Not only that but the conversion looks great!  You’re very welcome to come and have a look for yourself.  It’s great to see through the new windows out to the moat & to the “Sails of the South”  beyond.  Big thanks to everybody who made this project possible.

We Didn’t Do It!

Sadly we were not successful with our funding bid to the Veolia Trust.  Still, we know that we can continue working towards opening Hilsea Lido for public swimming…..  it will just take us a little longer than we had hoped for.

Working with City Boys

300 boys from Portsmouth City Boys school have been visiting the site recently to assist them with a business development project focusing on Hilsea Lido.  The project culminated with a day of collaboration, hard work and presentations.  Members of the Trust were very pleased to be invited to take part in this project along with other members of the business community.  We were all really impressed by the level of concentration and hard work that took place with boys working well together.  Amongst the tasks that the boys had to complete were:  working on budgets;  marketing plans;  art & design;  presentation.  The final pieces of work were of a very high standard and it was great to see the boys’ desire for Hilsea Lido to be open again.  Each team was in agreement with regard to the re-instatement of diving boards and slides, some suggested club nights & BBQ’s whilst others visualized zip wires and retail pods.  All good stuff and we’re very grateful for the enthusiasm and input of the boys and the teachers.


June 2011

All Change in the Gents Changing Cubicles

Volunteers from HLPP Trust and the Adventure College along with the Community Payback team are working full steam ahead.  We’re converting part of the old gents changing cubicles into retail, office and classroom space for Adventure College and South Coast Wakeboarding.  It’s one of  the biggest challenges for us to date and there is a strict timescale in which this has to be achieved,  Adventure College are scheduled to move in by the end of the month!  The area has had to be cleared of a variety of junk, including barrels of chemicals and ancient equipment.  The cubicles have been gently dismantled with the hope that we can recycle them according to demand in the future.  The old broken windowpanes have been removed and frames cleaned and prepped.  A wall near the entrance door has been removed, that was a job for the boys!  The floor is being raised and the frame is in the making.  The old ticket office is being converted into a mini kitchen & compression tank room.  We are very grateful for the following assistance:  Covers Timber & Building Merchants for their generous donation of equipment and materials to assist with this project;  Warings provided us with the expertise of senior project planner James Horton;  The Natural Flooring Co for supplying wood flooring at cost price.


May 2011

Planning Application

Hurrah!  The planning application has been approved and so it’s all systems go on the work required to create office, retail and classroom space for the Adventure College and South Coast Wakeboarding.

Life is going to be so much sweeter once we have a regular income!

Funding Bid

We travelled up to Basingstoke to give a presentation to the Veolia Trust.  Keep your fingers crossed, we’ve got to wait until July before we hear whether this bid has been successful.  If we are successful work will commence on site in August to restore the fountains, the lagoons and replace the diving boards.  How fantastic would that be?

The Lord Mayor’s Appeal – Passport to Success

Not only did we attend the Inauguration of the new Lord Mayor, Cheryl Buggy, but we are very pleased to be invited to take part in her new initiative for Portsmouth, the Passport to Success scheme.  Cheryl is keen to ensure opportunity for young people and the scheme is designed for 300 young people to take part in a variety of projects, working with university students and business mentors to assist eight charities.  Hilsea Lido Pool for the People Trust have been selected to be one of those charities, we are looking forward to working with Passport to Success over the next twelve months.


A fantastic 60s night at the Blue Lagoon saw Danny Raven & the Renegades on stage!  The music was great, the fundraising was excellent and the fashions were gorgeousnot to mention the cars parked outside.  Big thanks to the band for their very generous contribution to the evening, also Dave Allen for compering and to all the lovely supporters and raffle donors.  Photos and a review can be found by following the link:

Live@theLido 2011 featured The Morphic Fields, Thinking for Tuesday, Skaraman, a giant snake slide, a variety of stalls and activities, brilliant weather and tasty BBQ.   To top it all the final feature of the evening was being piped out by Len, a very talented bag-piper!  The event was featured by Express FM and their outside broadcasting unit and we were able to spread the word by appearing in a pre-event interview.  The interview can be found by following this link:


Our Thursday team are going from strength to strength, they’re doing a fantastic job.

We’ve finally got a stable finance team, gosh what a struggle that has been.  Now we can ensure that systems are in place and life will be so much sweeter.

Volunteers working in the plant room

Working with Schools

The designs for the planters look really good and selecting the winning design was a real challenge.  In the end we decided we liked elements of each design and so these will be merged to create the final planter design.  Work on the construction of the planters has begun, they’re going to look really good when they’re finished.

April 2011

Working with Schools

Very pleased to have Portsmouth City Boys School on site this month.  They are working on a project to improve the patio area in the Blue Lagoon, they will design and then build planters for the area.  We’re looking forward to seeing their designs and then selecting the ones that will complement the area best.

Planning Application

Still no news on the planning application!

Media Coverage

Interesting article on diving here, but even more interesting is the comment section.  Hilsea Lido gets plenty of coverage.

Funding Bid

Following the handover of the Blue Lagoon and Hilsea Lido in September 2010 we were in a position to apply for funding to assist us with this massive project.  Our first application went to the Veolia Trust, our bid is all about reinstating the high diving boards. We feel quite strongly that because Hilsea Lido was opened in a Jubilee year and 2012 is a Jubilee year, also London is hosting the Olympics in 2012 and high board diving will be a major feature of that, to be able to re-open Hilsea Lido with the high diving boards in place would send out a strong message to the world that Portsmouth is a major player when it comes to sport, leisure, fun and challenge.

Anyway, we didn’t hear anymore and having been informed that the selection to go through the second round would take place in February we assumed that we had failed.

BUT NO!  Out of an original submission from over 250 applicants we were informed this month that we are into the second round, what a fantastic achievement!  But there’s no gain without pain……  Lots of hard work to get various documents and a huge amount of information together.

We now have to make a presentation to the Board of the Veolia Trust next month.


Our great fundraising team organised a Quiz Night at the Blue Lagoon.  Really good turn out for a brain hurting and challenging evening of trivia, general knowledge, sport, science and more.  Everybody enjoyed the evening and lots of people were asking for us to make this a regular event……..   watch this space! Again, big thanks to the team, our supporters and the generous donations for the raffle.

March 2011

Planning Application

No news yet on our planning application.  Can’t wait for cable wakeboarding to come to Hilsea Lido!

Working with Schools

We’ve met up with COPS, Council of Portsmouth Schools.  They are students from local schools who work together to develop inter-schools relationships and work on a variety of projects including fundraising.  We’re looking forward to developing this relationship!

Media Coverage

We got a teeny-weeny mention in The Guardian.


Our fundraising team have been working hard to organise a variety of events at the Blue Lagoon.

This month saw an evening of fun and laughter hosted by the legendary Brian Kidd.  If you were unlucky enough to miss this event make sure you catch him at his next event, he’s got some great tales to tell!

The legendary Brian Kidd

A race night also took place.  What’s a race night?  No we didn’t know either!  It’s all about hobby horses, race tracks, placing bets, support, desperation & WINNING!!  All of the lovely people who turned up had a great time.

Again we’re very grateful for the support at these events and the generous donations for the raffles.


Our team of volunteers are continuing to do a brilliant job at the Blue Lagoon.  We’ve been painting, restoring, cleaning and replacing.  The building is beginning to sparkle!

We attended a volunteer fair at Portsmouth Guildhall, it was a busy day and we hit on success.  We’ve now got two new volunteers who have joined us for Thursdays and theyre doing a great job.


We attended a meeting with Council Officers, this was our final opportunity to try to convince them of the importance and value of the splashpool in it’s current format.  Sadly budgets over-ruled us and work to get the new splashpool in place will begin shortly.


February 2011

Fundraising Dinner

HLPP Trust hosted their first Fundraising Dinner at home!  It was lovely to be able to invite supporters on site and enjoy a great evening at the Blue Lagoon.

We enjoyed a very tasty three course meal, took part in a raffle and an auction.  The fantastic prizes were donated by local people and businesses and proved very popular.  The opportunity to take a trip in a Lambourgini Murcielago caused a real stir!

Media Stars!

HLPP Trust were invited to to feature in an article about the Big Society on the BBC 1 Politics Show.  It was a wet and windy day when the cameras arrived….. but then we can’t all look glamorous all of the time!

We were also invited to spread the word of Hilsea Lido by appearing on Portsmouth Live TV, click on the link below to see what we had to say.

Having heard that Meridian News were going to feature the problem of tombstoning on their evening show, we got in touch and spread the word about our plans to replace the diving boards.  It was a good move because Hilsea Lido got really good coverage, see the clip by clicking on the link below:

Planning Application

We’ve put in a joint planning application with South Coast Wakeboarding!  This is a really exciting stage for HLPP Trust.

We plan to convert part of the old gents changing rooms to accommodate The Adventure College and South Coast Wakeboarding, providing them with office, retail and classroom space.  We’re really pleased to be welcoming both businesses on site, they will be providing HLPP Trust with a regular rental income as well as bringing more people on site.

The Adventure College is a well established watersports company, providing Kayaking, scuba diving and sea survival training.

02392 69 1414

South Coast Wakeboarding will be bringing cable wakeboarding and paddle boarding to the moat adjacent to Hilsea Lido.  Cable wakeboarding is a new sport to the Portsmouth area.  The site will be developed to provide competitions level courses.
Contact: Scott Sullivan

Congratulations Andy!

January 2011

Andy Goodhall has gained a National Pool Plant Operators Certificate. The course meant that he had to take time visiting other swimming pools and writing several assignments – as well as doing a full time job!  It is of great benefit to our organisation and we are very proud of his achievement!

A New Year mini makeover for the Blue Lagoon

December 2010

Firstly we would like to say a huge thank you to everyone who donated their time and hard work at the mini makeover event during the Christmas break. The venue is now looking bright and inviting and the toilets are unrecognisable – clean and freshly painted with new hand basins!

There is still plenty of work to do and we need volunteers to help us with a variety of tasks.  Jobs on the list include cleaning, lifting and moving objects, painting, plumbing, carpentry and gardening

Come and join in – makeover sessions take place every Thursday from 10am. For more information contact Sabrina on 07903 823347 or send an email to

TJ Environmental Services Ltd lend a helping hand

We are very grateful to BAM Nuttall and Philip Smale of TJ Environmental Services Ltd who were recently on site and completed a drain survey for us.

Information gained from this task takes us a very useful step forward in putting the pieces of the jigsaw puzzle together and helps us get a little closer to achieving our aim of opening Hilsea Lido for public swimming in the future.

New owners for the Hilsea Lido main pool and Blue Lagoon

September 2010

Going from strength to strength the Hilsea Lido Pool for the People Trust (HLPP) are now permanent residents of the Hilsea Lido, well for the next 99 years at least!

After three years of negotiating with Portsmouth City Council (PCC) HLPP trust signed a 99 year lease for the management of the Hilsea Lido main pool and Blue Lagoon back in June 2010, HLPP have now completed the three month period and will become the new owners of the site on 3rd September 2010. This is a fantastic achievement for the charitable trust which began as a pressure group back in 2007.

Unfortunately at present an agreement cannot be reached over the management of the Splash Pool which remained closed this summer. PCC reported that a large amount of repairs and investment are needed to reopen the facility to the public. HLPP will continue talks with PCC in the hope an agreement can be met as the Splash Pool is an important part of the whole site especially for families with young children.

September is due to be a very busy month for HLPP as the trust will also be preparing and hosting their second annual Heritage weekend and Family Fun Day. As part of the national English Heritage open days the Hilsea Lido will be celebrating 75 years of Lido Lifestyle across the weekend of 11th & 12th September (1pm-4pm) with an exhibition held within the changing rooms and free walks and talks around the Lido site giving visitors the opportunity to explore the old and admire recent onsite developments.  The Hilsea Lido Family Fun-day will take place on Saturday 11th September (1pm – 4pm) with activities for everyone including fun races, wellie throwing with Brian Kidd, Harley Davidson Static display and much, much more.

This weekend will give HLPP and the people of Portsmouth a chance to celebrate the huge success and achievement of the trust and will encourage everyone to look forward to the future and explore plans for the revival of the site.