Male swimmers have thrown women a lifeline this week as the Ladies Pond undergoes repairs.

The Ladies pond will be closed from October 30 to November 1 to complete works started in the spring and "a few maintenance issues".

Highgate Men’s, Hampstead Mixed and Kenwood Ladies' ponds have all undergone revamps with new changing rooms, toilets and upgraded lifeguard huts.

The City of London Corporation (CoLC) which manages Hampstead Heath, approved the £700,000 work last year to improve accessibility for disabled swimmers and create more room to meet the rising number of swimmers at the heath.

Michael Smith, chair of the Highgate Men's Pond Association (HMPA) said the committee were "unanimous in welcoming the women swimmers while their pond is closed for ongoing construction work".

He added: "We understand the importance regular open water swimming has on the well being and health of people.

"We also work closely together to defend the interest of our swimmers and liaise with the City of London to make sure any increase in charges are appropriate and affordable while also campaigning to ensure those eligible for concessions can easily gain access and afford them."

Pauline Latchem and Beth Feresten, co-chairs of the Kenwood Ladies Pond Association (KLPA) said KLPA has "always had a good relationship" with all the pond  associations as well as the  Winter Swimming Club, and CoLC.

"We all work together well, regardless of gender," they said.

"Historically both the Mixed Pond and the Men's Pond have opened their gates to Kenwood Ladies' swimmers when our pond has been closed, whether due to ice, a leak of sewage or excessive runoff after heavy rains and in early 2016 when the pond was closed for three months to rebuild the deck and  lifeguards hut and expand the indoor changing space."

They said each time the ponds allowed women only swimming "and the men's pond included a session where women can swim alongside the men, whilst ensuring they maintain some men only swimming time". 

"These generous arrangements afford Ladies' pond swimmers a choice about where they wish to swim during closures, and ensures a women-only space if this is what they want or need. 

"We are grateful to everyone who has helped to facilitate this, and particularly  the Mixed Pond Winter Swimming Club who are delaying the start of their season by a few days in order to accommodate the Ladies' Pond."

CoLC has been contacted.