A pair of British wild swimmers are building their own pop-up sauna in an old horsebox so they can heat up in-between dips in the English Channel — and help support the UK’s growing love of saunas.
Alice Baddeley and David Batchelor were inspired after visiting Beach Box Spa on Brighton Beach in East Sussex and so are now creating their own Nordic sauna, which they are calling ‘Fire, Salt & Sea’ on Worthing Beach in West Sussex.
“Most Brits have only experienced the sauna at their local gym,” explains Alice. “So we are excited to offer them a more authentic Nordic sauna experience where people can experience high quality steam, authentic traditions, and cool down properly by jumping in the sea.”
David say they chose Worthing Beach due to its “community spirit, rich ecological history and local grassroots projects connecting people to the coast.”
“There are a handful of seaside saunas in towns around the UK. We have been inspired by the success of Beach Box in Brighton and feel that Fire, Salt & Sea will help to grow this nascent UK sauna culture. We want to be part of this community and are passionate about bringing the benefits of sauna and sauna culture to Worthing’s residents and visitors.”
“Every element of the sauna has to be carefully designed and that’s why we’ve chosen a HUUM stove, which contains a large number of stones that you can easily throw water at it from wherever you are sitting”.
Through EstonianSaunas.co.uk, they have chosen a Hive Heat 12kW with through-the-wall heating. The Hive Heat models are actually designed for Germany and Switzerland where local regulations on wood-burning stoves mean they have to be designed slightly differently — including with shorter safety distances. However, that also makes it ideal for the unique space requirements of the horsebox.
This stove will then be filled with grey rounded olavine dolerite stones that were collected in Finland.
The project, which is being launched through a crowdfunding campaign, has already gaining interest locally with positive media coverage in the local paper.
How to support Fire, Salt & Sea
There are two main ways you can support them.
Secondly, take a look at their crowdfunder here and see if you can contribute. If you are able to visit then paying now is a good deal to help them get started. But even if you don’t live nearby, maybe consider donating a token amount to show your support or perhaps you could buy an early Christmas present for someone who lives closer!
Thanks for reading
This Estonian Saunas blog is run by Anni and Adam.
We also have our own pop-up sauna here in Tallinn inside a converted ZiL-131 Soviet Army truck — and Beach Box Spa was also part of our inspiration. Funnily enough, we also have a strong connection to Sussex. Adam is a Sussex-born väliseestlane (an Estonian whose family fled into exile during Soviet times) and has warm memories of both Worthing and Brighton beach. We look forward to returning to both one day soon.
You can follow our own adventures exploring Estonian sauna culture and helping fill the world with more saunas on Instagram, Facebook, YouTube and Twitter. We also have a Facebook group for Sauna explorers / Sauna avastajad.
You can also contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.