Honiton Stingrays Swimming Club achieve National recognition and are awarded Swim21 status


- Credit: Archant

Honiton Stingrays Swimming Club are celebrating after being awarded Swim21 status due to the continued commitment and hard work of those involved in the club.

Swim21 is about creating the best possible swimming experience for all and raising the quality of aquatics provision provided by the club. In addition to this the programme enhances club management, strengthens the structures and unites the club with a philosophy and programmes that ensure the best environment is available for all swimmers.

This National recognition comes at a time when the Honiton Stingrays are receiving notoriety as one of the best small swimming clubs in the region.

Renowned for its friendly atmosphere and installing the club’s ethos of ‘Actively supporting the pursuit of excellence by encouraging swimmers to gain their full potential’ into all swimmers, the Sharks continue to grow in numbers, performance and reputation.

Alix Stewart the clubs swim 21 coordinator says: “Gaining Swim21 means the club meets the policy and procedure benchmarks set out by the ASA for accredited clubs.

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“As a small club, this is a huge achievement, allowing access to ASA resources such as CPD for volunteers and development days for swimmers”

Head Coach Ralph Watson, who has been fundamental in the growth of the club, has been involved in swimming for over thirty five years as a Teacher and coach, working with swimmers from Learn to swim to regional, national, European and world and para-Olympic standard.

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He said: “It all started when I took my daughters to our local club, Harrow and Wealdstone in London.

“One day I was asked to help out on the poolside as they were short of teachers, and that was it, I was hooked.”

Having moved from London in 2010 to live in Sidbury, Ralph, by chance, noticed a sign on the Honiton club notice board advertising for a coach.

In the last five years Ralph, alongside a dedicated group of volunteers and committee members, has seen the club grow in strength and numbers.

The Stingrays currently has a membership of 60 swimmers catering for those who swim for fitness and those that swim to compete.

For those that choose to compete there has been recent success at a number of local and regional gala’s. In addition to this the club has 12 swimmers with a combined total of thirty six County qualifying times.

In line with the SWim21 accreditation the club has a focused marketing plan looking at developing member numbers and engaging with local companies to potentially increase opportunities through sponsorship and fundraising.

Anyone interested in either joining, or indeed sponsoring the club, can find out more at mailto:Honitonswimclub@gmail.com

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