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Water polo community thanked for ‘open and honest opinions’ at regional meetings

Swim England has thanked members of the water polo community who gave their ‘open and honest opinions’ at a series of regional meetings.

More than 120 people attended the eight meetings across the country over two-and-a-half weeks, which were staged to give clubs, committee members, players, officials, volunteers and key stakeholders the chance to help shape the future of the sport.

Consultant David Meli, who is leading on the project for Swim England, said: “It was great to have so many people come along and talk to us in an open and honest fashion about the things that were affecting them in being able to deliver opportunities in water polo.

“It is clear that there are some common themes that were raised consistently across all the meetings and it is these that will form the focus of the future plan for the sport.

“This will ensure that it is targeted at those areas that will have the biggest impact as well as being manageable and sustainable.”

The next stage of the process will be focused on two key areas that were consistently raised at the meetings – improving the communication and access to relevant water polo information and delivering a coordinated calendar for the sport in partnership with other key stakeholders.

A new chairperson of the Water Polo Leadership Group will also be announced in the New Year with vacancies for a number of roles currently being advertised.

Engaged in future development of sport

Interviews for these positions will be held week commencing 6 January.

The first meeting of the new Water Polo Leadership Group will take place on 29 January when an outline of the proposed future plan for the sport will be presented.

Further work will then be carried out before being made available to regional water polo leads at the end of March.

They will gather comments and feedback from local contacts ahead of their attendance at the Water Polo Leadership Group meeting in April.

David added: “We believe that the approach we are taking not only provides an opportunity for the water polo community to be engaged in the future development of the sport but also helps to manage expectations about what can be achieved and how resources can be appropriately allocated.

“This will cover all levels of the sport from grassroots to talent pathway, providing a vision for water polo that is agreed and delivered by the whole community.”