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Fullwood and West View in Preston achieve swim21 accreditation

8 June 2012

Fullwood and West View Climbing and Leisure Centres in Preston are celebrating becoming swim21 accredited. swim21 accreditation is the national benchmark for excellence awarded by the ASA, the national governing body for swimming and aquatic disciplines in England.

The clubs, which run a wide range of sessions from learn to swim for children to female only classes, work very closely with local clubs which are crucial to their success.  These clubs range from swimming and water polo clubs to community groups.  By working with the Preston City Council, Fullwood and West View have helped to raise the profile of swimming in the Preston area and participation has increased, particularly with target groups such as women and girls, BME communities and disabilities.

Gillian Osborne, Senior Sports Development Officer at Preston City Council said, “This accreditation is something that the centres have wanted to do for some time.   The council are very keen on Quest and the Sport and Health Development team gained 98% in Quest.  We are very keen to improve the quality of service and are geared to the continuously improving and moving forward with the times.”

“By having the swim21 accreditation we want to be able to assure our partners that we are providing a quality service.”

Since achieving accreditation, the club has also been able to access additional funding from Swimathon.  This has enabled them to set up a community swimming programme with Callon Kids Club, which provides swimming lessons for young children aged 5-7 years.  Funding is used to hire the pools and instructors and this has allowed children, who have difficulty accessing the Council’s mainstream lessons dues to a variety of barriers linked to deprivation, to attend at a hugely subsidised rate.  In addition the money will help to train a community volunteer to ASA level 1 which will help to support the delivery of the project and sustain the programme once funding has ended.

Gillian said, “The project will remove barriers and encourage he local community to access leisure facilities for the first time.”

swim21 accreditation is the ASA’s ‘Quality Mark’ for clubs and the ASA’s way of ensuring every athlete – whatever their age or level of experience – belongs to a club that provides the best possible support and environment.

Specifically it is about putting the swimmers first and ensuring athletes are following the pathway the ASA recognises for training and competition (via the principles of Long Term Athlete Development).

For further information about swim21 Club Accreditation visit swimming.org/swim21.

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