British imam and broadcaster Ajmal Masroor has defended controversial 'segregated swimming' sessions, telling talkRADIO that women "prefer a segregated pool where they can enjoy themselves without being an object of desire".
Sessions banishing the opposite sex are being held on Friday evenings at Inspire Sports Village in Luton.
Questions have been raised over why men, despite paying a lower fee and having earlier use of the facilities, are entitled to use the main 50-metre competition pool, while women are restricted to the 20-metre 'community pool'.
Masroor told Julia Hartley-Brewer that women want to be segregated from men whilst swimming.
"The demand is extremely high from people of faith and no faith," he said.
"From our experience [women] prefer a segregated pool, where they can enjoy themselves without being an object of desire.
"If men want to do the same, in a free society like ours, as long as they're paying, I don't have a problem with that."
Listen to the full interview to find out more, and let us know what you think of Luton's segregated swimming policy