Otters dive in and make a big splash at presentation night

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More than a hundred parents and children packed Stanhope Hall recently for this year’s Horncastle Otters Swimming Club presentation night.

Club president Fiona Martin handed out over 300 certificates to mark members’ progress in learning to swim and in developing water safety skills.

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Mrs Martin said she was delighted to see such a healthy turn out at the presentation evening.

She was full of praise for the efforts of members and the volunteer teaching and support staff during a busy year for the club.

Certificates were also handed out to members who, earlier in the year, took part in a sponsored swim to raise money for the club.

The sponsored event provided a rare opportunity for members to swim longer distances than would otherwise be possible during routine club sessions.

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Congratulating all the swimmers who took part, club chairman Jackie Ross singled out Poppy Pearson for particular praise.

Poppy completed a 5,000m swim - no small feat as this took over two hours and 200 lengths of the Horncastle pool.

The club’s group of nine rookie lifeguards were rewarded with over 50 certificates for their efforts during the year.

George Billington, one of the club’s most talented young swimmers, successfully completed all 9 stages of the ‘Rookie Lifeguard’ syllabus in just one year.

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Lack of a full depth pool proved no obstacle to the 14 Otters’ water polo players who achieved the second highest Swim England standard this year.

Will Tempest was voted Player’s Player by his team mates and Harry Wisby received the Teacher’s Shield.

Throughout the presentation evening, 45 trophies, medals and progress awards were presented by Mrs Martin who is a well known town and district councillor and an MBE.

Presentations went to the winners of a diving competition and lifeguarding races. Ms Ross delivered an impressive speech and during her closing remarks, she thanked all the members’ families for their support.

She called all of the pool assistants, teachers and support staff to the stage to receive a small token of her appreciation for their continued efforts.

The presentation night rounded off another terrific year for the Otters who, just 12 months ago, agreed a deal to stay at Horncastle Swimming Pool.

That put an end to fears about the future of the club which has taught hundreds of children to swim.

The last 12 months has also featured a successful gala and away days at Whisby Lakes.