Swimming with swallows and dragonflies
Oxfordshire locals Kate and Ben Brown operate Turley Farm Barns, which includes holiday accommodation and an entertainment venue. The 25-acre working farm is home to a variety of animals and is a setting that attracts holidaymakers from around the country.
The Browns wanted to create a swimming environment that would enhance the picturesque landscape rather than detract from it, and the rural location and its surroundings lent itself to a natural pool rather than concrete or fibreglass options. Just as important was the fact that Ben and Kate did not want to swim in chlorine and the other chemicals associated with more traditional pools — they wanted the experience of swimming in a totally natural environment.
A natural swimming pool, or pond, uses biofiltration to keep the water clean, clear and healthy. Mountain Pools Managing Director Tim Gunning said if it’s designed well, it will blend seamlessly into the garden and encourage wildlife.
“A natural pool is an oasis for microorganisms, plants and insects that all form part of the ecosystem, resulting in a crystal clear pool that when the sun does shine, is there to be enjoyed by man as well,” he said.
Gunning, in conjunction with the Natural Pools swimming pool company, designed and built a 250 m rectangular pool with a large regeneration area where impurities are absorbed by specialist plants as nutrients and harmful bacteria are destroyed by natural water organisms.
“The flowers and plants are not only vital to the purity of the water and workings of the pool but also give the pool a stunning look throughout the seasons.
“Two timber walkways lead to the pool where people can sit and enjoy the serene setting with a beverage or use them as diving platforms,” he said.
The MultiCyclone removes debris through the process of centrifugal filtration prior to reaching the Exotuf filter, ensuring the best mechanical and biological filtration is achieved.
The pool’s regeneration area and plants attract local wildlife, with dragonflies and swallows enjoying the pool as much as the owners and guests.
“A number of guests have commented how much they enjoy using the pool when staying at the farm,” said Ben, who swims at least 20 pool lengths each day.
“We would highly recommend a natural pool to anyone. Without doubt it has far exceeded our expectations.
“It was a great journey from the initial water colour design to the first time we took a swim. It was worth every penny,” he said.
Phone: 02 9898 8600
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