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Water Polo stalwart receives MBE

Mavis Bent, who has been involved in swimming and water polo for 35 years, has received a Member of the Order of the British Empire in the New Year Honours.

Mrs Bent was officially given the honour for her “voluntary service to Swimming and Water Polo in Greater Manchester”, although specifically it was for her work with Tyldesley Swimming and Water Polo Club and Manchester & District Swimming and Water Polo Association.

Mrs Bent, now aged 67, became involved in the club in 1973 when she took her son Colin along to try swimming. Colin soon became a keen water polo player and event went on to represent England. But it was in 1978 that she began assisting the development of the senior water polo team, a role she has continued, and in 1998 she saw the Tyldesley team crowned National League Division 2 Champions and secure promotion to Division 1.

She was named President of the club in 1996 and since then has encouraged others to develop through coaching and officials courses. In January 2005, she was elected President of Manchester & District Swimming and Water Polo Association and from January 2007 has served as a Vice President.

Her achievements were also acknowledged in the House of Commons, when in 2005 Barbara Keeley (the then newly elected MP for Worsley) said: “Even the best facilities need the commitment of people such as Mavis Bent and Gwyn Pierce, who run the Tyldesley swimming and water polo club.”

Mrs Bent is also a qualified assistant water polo coach and was awarded a Lifetime Achievement Award in the ASA North West Region Aquaforce Volunteer Awards in 2007.

"I am amazed and very honoured,” said Mrs Bent.

There were also MBEs for Mrs Susan Clarke for her voluntary service to Disability Swimming in Stockton-on-Tees and for Mrs Janice Naylor for her services to swimming in Penicuik, Midlothian.

-ENDS-

For more information contact the ASA PR Manager Sharon Rose on 01509 632262, 07876 652318 or email sharon.rose@swimming.org The ASA is the English National Governing Body for Swimming, Diving, Water Polo, Open Water, and Synchronised Swimming. It organises competition throughout England, establishes the Laws of the Sport and operates comprehensive certification and education programmes for Teachers, Coaches and Officials as well as its renowned Learn To Swim Awards scheme. The ASA supports 1,220 affiliated swimming clubs through a National/Regional/County structure. The ASA aims to ensure everybody has an opportunity to learn to swim.

About British Gas
British Gas is Britain's favourite domestic energy supplier. As well as providing gas and electricity, it also installs and maintains central heating and gas appliances in millions of homes throughout the country. British Gas is very proud to be the principal partner of British Swimming and home countries: The ASA, Scottish Swimming and Swim Wales. British Gas is supporting the team's quest for medals on the world and Olympic stage - and giving as many people as possible the opportunity to learn to swim and use swimming as part of a healthy lifestyle. British Gas wants to ensure local pools remain at the heart of our communities. By using its expertise, it can help them reduce costs by being more energy efficient and safeguard the facilities for this and future generations. For more information visit www.britishgas.co.uk/swimming

About Kellogg's
The Kellogg Company was founded in 1906 and today produces 40 different cereals including popular brands such as Special K, Cornflakes and Coco Pops, and 56 different snacks including brands such as Nutri-Grain and Special K snacks. Kellogg's has been a partner of the ASA and British Swimming for 13 years, sponsoring the Kellogg's ASA Awards and enabling over 50,000 people to take up swimming as part of an active lifestyle.

About Speedo®
The world’s leading swimwear brand, Speedo® is passionate about life in and around the water, creating revolutionary new technologies, designs and innovations. Supporting swimming from grass-roots through to elite level, including the phenomenal Michael Phelps, Speedo® is owned by Speedo Holdings B.V and distributed in over 170 countries around the world; SPEEDO, the ARROW device, FASTSKIN, LZR PULSE, SPEEDO ENDURANCE, FLIPTURNS, FASTSKINFSII, SPEEDO BIOFUSE, SWYM and LZR RACER are registered trademarks of Speedo Holdings B.V. The LZR RACER suit has worldwide design rights and patents pending.

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