The previous house we lived in had a large garden and a chemical, indoor swimming pool. In using it for the first two years I began to understand how toxic chlorine was and so we came up with this mad scheme to take the building down and turn it into a natural pool, where the water is cleaned by plants and no chemicals are used.

The result was amazing, it’s wild swimming in your own garden but without the mud, the water quality is excellent, and it is full of wildlife, it’s a feeling of really being one with nature.

The old swimming pool tank still exists, and the water is pumped from the swimming zone as it is called into the regeneration zone which is where the plants clean the water. The water is then filtered back into the main swimming zone. The planting combinations are important, and it is essentially a reed bed system where the plants are grown without soil and so take their nutrients directly from the water.

These pools have been perfected over the years by a company called Biotop and a number of their partners are working in the UK –