The Lily Pad Diving Platform
The Lily Pad Freediving Platform
Welcome to The Lily Pad!
Located in the middle of Vobster Quay in Somerset, Lily is a freediving platform purpose-built for the British Freediving Association! Originally a testing platform for the military, she was taken back into service with the help and support of many people and companies. Now fully operational as a freediving platform, she has 6 retrievable lines down to 34 metres, a sundeck, and even a shed for storing gear
Vobster Quay is a unique location for divers. In the middle of beautiful countryside, the water has great visibility, a surface temperature of 22 degrees (taken end of May 06), and there is hot food, hot showers, and a shop to buy gear. Apart from Lily, there are also many other attractions for freedivers, including a plane at 10 metres, a boat at 17 metres, cars and trucks, a wheel house, crushing works and even an industrial tumble drier... There are also massive trout which feed from your hand, ducks, and very friendly staff!
Lily and Vobster are only open to freedivers if they are members of the BFA. You can read more about Vobster at http://www.vobsterquay.co.uk
If you wish to freedive at Vobster then you must read the following information.
Freedivers at Vobster must adhere to the following requirements for insurance purposes:
- All freedivers must dive with a freediving buddy
- Freedivers may only dive to the limits of their training. For AIDA * freedivers this is 10 metres, AIDA ** freedivers 20 metres, AIDA *** freedivers 25 metres, and AIDA **** freedivers 35 metres.
- All freedivers using Lily must wear a lanyard, except when buddying
- Freedivers must phone Vobster prior to arriving and show their BFA membership cards in the office by the water. If you do not have your card then you must provide photo ID. Vobster will check this against the list of members on the BFA site. The member of staff will then give you the key to the shed on Lily.
- When you have finished your dive session, please pull all lines out of the water, clean the deck, replace all gear in the shed and lock it, bringing the key back to the office.
Further useful information:
- The 2 lines at the front of Lily (by the shed) are set to 15 metres and are for free immersion and testing buoyancy. They are marked using the system below.
- All the other 4 lines run to the bottom, are for constant weight diving and are marked as follows: 1 black line for 10 metres, 2 for 20 and 3 for 30. At 5, 15 and 25 metres there is a red line. At 12, 14, 16, 18, 22, 24, 26, 28, 32, 34 metres there is a yellow and green striped line.
- All lines are easily retrievable from the platform. Either an instructor, member of the BFA committee or member of Vobster staff will show you how to use these if you are confused! Please set your depth before you make a dive to avoid overshooting your target.
- Please be aware that at 27 metres the water gets very dark. This depth should only be reached by AIDA **** freedivers or divers under instruction from an AIDA instructor.
- You are expected to practice rescue techniques that you have learnt during training.
- In the shed there are currently 2 camping chairs, dustpan and brush, bucket and a first aid kit. Please feel free to add to the creature comforts of Lily, and ensure that when you have finished your session everything is put back neatly in the shed.
- If you have forgotten your lanyard then quick release freediving lanyards are available to buy in the shop.
- If you would like to dive at Vobster but do not have a buddy then send a email to our web master, Jean-Marc. He will put a posting out on this page with your name, email address and dates you wish to dive. Other members may use this facility to buddy up with you.
- If you have any questions, please contact either the BFA chair, Emma Farrell, or site manager at Vobster, Tim Clements.