Swim club seeks support to stay afloat
SOUNDWELL Swimming Club, which has been running for nearly 60 years, is facing a funding crisis because of Covid-19.
The club, South Gloucestershire’s premier competitive swimming club, is based at Kingswood Leisure Centre. It is non profit-making and apart from its professional head coach is staffed and run by volunteers.
It says its finances are vulnerable following the lockdown. Although the club has been able to return to the leisure centre in Soundwell, it is facing increasing costs to use the pool for training, not least because the centre itself has to meet rising bills.
At the same time, Soundwell Swimming Club, which has more than 200 swimmers aged from four to early 20s, is unable to raise funds through holding swimming competitions.
A spokesman said: “Learning to swim is incredibly important for children of all ages, and has significant physical and mental well-being benefits. We provide lessons for swimmers across the Kingswood, Emersons Green, Staple Hill and Mangotsfield areas and beyond. Our parents are paying increased fees but this still does not cover our costs.”
The club has now launched a crowdfunding campaign with the aim of raising £5,000, so this can be matched by a further £5,000 from Swim England.
Swimmers and their families have rallied round and after just two weeks, nearly £1,000 has come in. The club’s coaches are planning a sponsored cycle ride to raise more cash.
The spokesman added: “We would love for the local community to get behind our fundraising. Our club has been a part of the local community for more than 50 years and we would like to continue to help children learn to swim and develop their swimming skills for another 50 years.”
Soundwell Swimming Club was established in 1962 and has a strong record of success, with many swimmers winning county, regional and national competitions. Currently, swimmers range from tots in the Learn to Swim classes to older swimmers in the performance squad.