Monday 2nd December – The outstanding efforts of three Parkwood Leisure swimming teachers were recently recognised at annual awards ceremonies for Swim England and Swim Wales.
This year’s Swim England National Awards took place on Monday 18th November and celebrated all individual achievements and team successes of the past year. The awards recognise all those involved in the sport, from members and volunteers to partners, teachers and athletes.
Two members of staff from Parkwood were nominated for the ‘Swim England Teacher of the Year’; Mark Jefferies, a swimming teacher for North Devon Leisure Centre, and Kara Williams, who teaches at multiple sites in Exeter and the surrounding area.
There was more good news in Wales, where swimming instructor Jimmy Donovan was shortlisted in the ‘Outstanding Contribution to Aquatics’ category at the Swim Wales Awards held earlier this month.
Jimmy, who works at the Cardiff International Pool, was nominated in recognition of his consistent quality and tailored teaching delivered in his classes, and continues to support the centre’s members in swimming activities.
Suzanne Gabb, National Aquatic Strategic Lead for Parkwood Leisure, said: “It’s a great achievement for all three nominees to be shortlisted for their respective awards and we are incredibly proud of Mark, Kara and Jimmy.
“They have not only gone above and beyond in their efforts to support the swimming programme at their facilities, but they have also provided fantastic support to our members and continue to promote the physical and social benefits of swimming, and help to build members’ confidence in the water.”
In the last 12 months, 14 million adults took part in some form of swimming activity in England alone, the equivalent of 31% of the nation’s population. Recent figures from Swim England also report that there are growing membership numbers, with just under 189,500 Swim England members in the country. Regular physical activity like swimming has also been found to reduce occurrence of chronic diseases such as dementia and diabetes by 20-40%.