Carr Mill Dam

In warmer weather it can be tempting to take a dip in areas of open water. There are some important things you need to know.

  • The depths of the water can change suddenly, some parts of the 'Blue Lagoon' in Bold are thought to be up to 20 feet deep. There may also be underwater hazzards that you cannot see. 
  • Open water is usually colder than water would be in a swimming pool, this can effect people's ability to swim. Falling or jumping into very cold water can lead to Cold Water Shock.
  • There have been several deaths in the UK over recent years, when people have underestimated the temperature of the water, panicked and drowned.
  • Research has shown that more than a quarter of adult drowning victims had alcohol or drugs in their system. If you have been drinking stay away from the water.
  • Carr Mill Dam waters are privately owned and frequently used by water skiers, who are worried that swimmers are difficult to spot in the water.
  • People have been seen struggling in our local open waters without suitable buoyancy aids.

In light of the above we actively discourage the public from swimming in our open water spaces. Our local fire crews have familiarised themselves with our open water spots and along with partners from the Community Safety Partnership will patrol the areas during busy periods to offer safety advice.

If you fall in open water or find yourself in difficulty follow the RNLI's Float to Live advice.

Cllr Jeanie Bell, Cabinet Member for Community Safety and Chair of the Safer St Helens Partnership advised:

"As the weather improves over the Summer months and with our swimming pools closed due to Government regulations, it is important that residents understand the dangers of open water swimming. Whilst our open water areas in the borough look attractive, please consider the risks, stay safe and do not use these facilities for swimming. The safest place to swim is in a supervised swimming pool and I would ask residents to wait until these facilities open again and seek alternative forms of exercise during this time."

There are lots of websites that can recommend suitable areas for open water swimming, some requiring membership. Details of some local open water clubs are below, if you know of any that are missing from the list let us know @safer.sthelens on Facebook.


Mountain Monkeys - various open water activities

Carr Mill Dam

Mountain Monkeys Website

email: [email protected]

tel: 07799 286 836


St Helens Canoe Club 

Carr Mill Dam

St Helens Canoe Club website

Facebook - @sthelenscc

Twitter - @sthelens_cc


St Helens Triathlon Club - various open water activities

Eccelston Mere, Burrows Lane

Mondays at 6:30pm (not currently running due to water quality/ algae)

St Helens Triathlon Club website

email: [email protected]

tel: 07799 033 323


St Helens Youth Service - Outdoor Education Activities (currently on hold due to coronavirus)

Taylor Park Lake

Youth Service Outdoor Education webpage

Instagram - @YouthserviceSTH

Twitter - @YouthserviceSTH

Aged 5 upwards, adult bookings also taken

Merseyside Water Safety Forum advice

Visiting the coast or a waterside location this weekend? Take note of the advice from the Merseyside Water Safety Forum.

A trip to the cost