Swim England

A nation swimming

Jane Nickerson congratulates Olympians and hopes success will spark inspiration

Swim England chief executive Jane Nickerson congratulates all of Team GB’s aquatic athletes and hopes the success will spark inspiration in the next generation.

The rearranged Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games will go down in the history books, and not only because of the year-long postponement.

The early mornings and late nights have certainly been worth it as we saw eight swimming medals, three diving medals and many wonderful performances.

It was the most successful Olympic swimming campaign ever for Team GB and it was kick started by Adam Peaty becoming the first British swimmer to successfully defend an Olympic title.

The British quartet set a new world record in the first-ever Mixed Medley Relay Olympic final and the success in the 4x200m Freestyle relay crowned Tom Dean as a double Olympic champion.

In the diving, we saw how much it meant to Tom Daley after winning his first ever Olympic gold medal alongside Matty Lee, which he then added to with a bronze in his individual event. Jack Laugher also recovered from a tough year to battle his way to a well-deserved bronze.

Olympic debutants Alice Dearing and Hector Pardoe in the marathon swimming and the artistic swimming duet of Kate Shortman and Isabelle Thorpe did the nation proud with their performances, setting them on their path towards Paris.

The efforts of 16-year-old’s Jacob Whittle and Andrea Spendolini-Sirieix, fresh off the Swim England talent pathways, showed that all dreams are possible.

It’s not just about the medals though. Every single British athlete, coach, volunteer and member of the support staff are now role models for the next generation.

This includes all of those involved from Learn to Swim, club level and beyond. Our athletes had to start somewhere.

We also appreciate the role families and parents have played in the success of this great team. The support network, including the parental taxi service at all hours of the morning, cannot be underestimated.

From everyone at Swim England, we would like to say a huge congratulations. You were all part of this Olympic success.

Inspire a generation

We hope that this success will inspire more and more to get involved with our wonderful disciplines.

You may have noticed our #InspiredToTry messaging across social media and our website. We want this to be a catalyst for the younger generation.

If you have watched any of the athletes throughout the Games and want to achieve that one day – follow your dreams.

We will continue our campaigning work and we hope that this success will support our fight for funding and investment in facilities.

We want to see a legacy left behind from not only this Olympic Games, but the upcoming Paralympics and the Commonwealth Games next year.

We’re just a few weeks away from the start of what I’m sure will be a Paralympic Games just as exciting and successful.

Although crowds haven’t been able to attend the events in Tokyo, we hope to see packed venues in Birmingham for the first home Commonwealth Games since 2002.

If you have been inspired to try swimming, diving, water polo, artistic swimming or open water swimming, make sure you visit discover.swimming.org to find clubs near you.