Menu

InstagramTwitterYouTubeFacebookSnapchat
Globe Icon

Join

and support
LGBT+ journalism

Current Affairs

Complaints made over trans women being allowed into women’s swimming pond

Joseph McCormick December 31, 2017
bookmarking iconBookmark Article

Participants take part in the Outdoor Swimming Society's annual "December Dip" at Parliament Hill lido in north London on December 13, 2014. AFP PHOTO / LEON NEAL (Photo credit should read LEON NEAL/AFP/Getty Images)

Complaints have been made over a famed London swimming pond announcing that trans women will be welcomed.

The Hampstead Heath women’s only pond has announced it will be open to trans women.

But some have claimed that the change will open the policy up to being taken advantage of.

Getty

Reports in the Mail Online and Evening Standard quoted regular users of the pond who misgendered trans women.

One quoted, Margaret Roberts, said that she had asked a fellow swimmer to leave because she “looked and dressed like a male”.

The article also quoted trans exclusionary radical feminist (TERF) Julie Bindel, who says she has swum in the pond for decades.

She said: “It is totally unacceptable to allow men who identify as women, but who are otherwise male bodied and socialised as men, to be in a women-only space.

“I have seen mothers bring their young daughters who are self-conscious about their bodies but want to feel good about swimming and exposing their skin to the sun. The last thing they want is to look behind them and see a male-bodied person pretending to be a woman in order to gawp at them.”

But the article also included a response from Trans Actual which expressed confusion at why male pronouns were being used to describe trans women who want to swim in the pond.

On Twitter, Trans Actual said: “The Ladies’ Pond is still preserved for women. Trans women are women. We’re not sure why you’re referring to trans women as men.”

The change was made by the City of London Corporation which runs the pond for the change.

A spokesperson for the City of London said: “Over the last year all lifeguards and managers at Hampstead Heath ponds have taken transgender awareness training courses, which have been offered to, and taken by, the ponds’ swimming associations as well.

“We are working with the LGBTQ community to ensure our facilities are fit to serve the needs of everyone who enjoys them, and will continue to do so in the future.”

Earlier today it was reported that an NHS trust had apologised to a woman who complained about having a trans woman nurse at an appointment.

The woman, who did not go through with the smear test over being given a trans nurse, said she felt “embarrassed” by having been allocated the nurse.

She described the nurse as having “stubble and a beard” and said she was “clearly a man”.

Julie Bindel, a feminist writer, has previously come under fire for her views on transgender women.

She most recently said she thought changing the gender of the Doctor in Doctor Who to female was to provide “titillation” for male viewers.

Jodie Whittaker is The Doctor in Doctor Who
Jodie Whittaker is The Doctor (BBC)

An event featuring Bindel was defended by LGBT History Month in January.

In a notorious 2004 column, Ms Bindel claimed: “I don’t have a problem with men disposing of their genitals, but it does not make them women, in the same way that shoving a bit of vacuum hose down your 501s does not make you a man.”

As recently as October last year, Ms Bindel penned a piece for the Daily Mail claiming that treating transgender children is “playing politics with children’s lives”.

Related topics: hampstead heath, Trans

Click to comment

Swipe sideways to view more posts!

Dismiss

Loading ...

Close icon