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Men’s Pond remains closed after Hampstead Heath swim tragedy

Investigation continues as flowers are laid for man found dead in water

06 June, 2019 — By Dan Carrier

Flowers at the Men’s Pond

THE Men’s Pond on Hampstead Heath is set to remain closed until the weekend after the body of a swimmer was recovered from the waters on Monday.

Heath managers, the City of London, say investigations are “on-going” into how a man in his 50s had died. He was found after a two-day search.

The man, named as architect Christopher Slamon, is believed he had gone for a dip with two friends on Saturday afternoon.

His wife said in a statement: “My husband Chris Slamon was a wonderful father to our two lovely girls. The support from his many friends and family has been overwhelming and a true reflection of the huge personality he was.”

She added: “We would like to thank all the various authorities involved over the last few days, in particular the police and the lifeguards at the men’s pond.”

Police officers were called to the Men’s Pond when walkers found clothing on one of the banks. Nothing was found on the surface and after a man was reported to be missing locally, divers were brought in to scour the waters. The pond is open all year and overseen by fully trained lifeguards. At some points, the water is six metres deep.

A City of London spokesman said: “Our thoughts and condolences are with the family and friends of the deceased at this sad time. The Men’s Pond will remain closed and will be reopened once investigations are complete.”

Flowers and cards have been placed on railings at the entrance to the pond.

One poignant note said: “Dear Chris, we will miss your smile, your humour and irony, seeing you walking along West Hill Court with your family. We shared so much fun with you in the garden, sharing a glass of wine with you and good conversation…”

A police spokesman said the family of the missing man have been informed of the developments and his death is currently being treated as unexplained.

Early morning swimmers are being advised that they can use the Kenwood Ladies Pond, a short walk upstream from the Men’s Pond, between 7 and 9am, or the Mixed Pond, near East Heath, until the Men’s Pond is re-opened.

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