History - London Aquatics Centre

Located in the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park, London Aquatics Centre was at the heart of the action during the seminal summer of London 2012. Since the Games captured the nation’s imagination, this iconic venue – the scene of so many triumphant memories from London 2012 – is now open for enjoyment for the whole community.

In the aftermath of the Games, London Aquatics Centre underwent extensive alterations and re-opened to the public in March 2014. This stunning facility possesses three swimming pools – two 50m pools and a diving pool – as well as a state-of-the-art 100 station gym and a fantastic café. The 25m diving pool features boards and platforms from 1m to 10m, while there’s also a dry diving zone for training, as well as a group exercise studio.

London Aquatic Centre

More than one million people visit London Aquatics Centre each year and it’s open to everyone. As well as the obvious aquatic activities such as lane swimming and Everyone Active’s award-winning adult and child swimming lessons, we also offer aqua classes, diving, family fun swimming sessions and so much more.

As an iconic international sporting venue, London Aquatics Centre also hosts national and international events. These include the likes of the2014 FINA/NVC Diving World Series and the 2016 European Aquatics Championships among many other high-profile competitions such as the Super League Triathlon, as well as numerous galas. 

London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games Highlights

As a purpose-built London 2012 venue, London Aquatics Centre witnessed its fair share of heroics at both the Olympic and Paralympic Games. It hosted 32 events in all across the swimming, diving and artistic swimming disciplines.

Team GB posted some impressive performances in the pool, with Michael Jamieson winning a silver medal in the 200m breaststroke. Furthermore, Becky Adlington succeeded in winning bronze medals in the 400m and 800m freestyle events. Tom Daley, meanwhile, secured bronze from the 10m diving platform.

The greatest success came in the Paralympic Games, however, as Ellie Simmonds claimed two gold medals, as well as one World Record in the 400m freestyle.

To round all this off, Michael Phelps secured his status in the pantheon of Olympic greats by winning six medals and becoming the most decorated Olympic athlete of all time.

London Aquatics Centre Timeline 

  • 2004: Pritzker Prize-winning architect Zaha Hadid designs London Aquatics Centre before the city wins the bid for the 2012 Games
  • 2005: The IOC award London the right to host the Games at an event in Singapore
  • 2006: Revised plans are unveiled, showcasing capacity for up to 17,500 spectators
  • 2008: Construction by Balfour Beatty begins
  • 2011: London Aquatics Centre construction completed
  • 2012: London Aquatics Centre hosts 2012 London Summer Olympic and Paralympic Games
  • 2013: The seating capacity is reduced to 2,500, with space for an addition 1,000 for major events as the ‘wings’ are removed.
  • 2013: Rights to host the FINA World Diving Series (April 2014) and the European Swimming Championships 2016 secured by London Aquatics Centre
  • 2014: London Aquatics Centre opens to the public
  • 2023: Everyone Active secures the rights to manage London Aquatics Centre
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