November 2014: Swimming club sets sights high for first gala


A HIGH school’s new swimming club is in training for its first gala next month.

Haslingden Aces swimming club was set up at Haslingden High School in May this year and is already over-subscribed with a waiting list.

Deputy Headteacher Gill Smith, a qualified swimming instructor set up the club and is delighted at how popular it has become.

She said: “We are a competitive club and because we have a lot of really strong swimmers at Haslingden High School but we don’t have a pool, I asked if there was any capacity at Marl Pits Leisure Centre and luckily there was.”

The club meets every Thursday after school and has been backed by funding from the school and the Parent, Teacher and Friends Association.

Swimmers will face Accrington Academy in the first gala in December.

One of the club members Alice Harding, 14, is already a rising star having competed at regional and national level.

She said: “I started swimming when I was about four or five and last year I was in quite a few regional finals and was fourth in the 800m freestyle for Pioneer 79 at Accrington Academy. I also got into the national finals in three relay races.

“I specialise in long distance swimming and open water and recently achieved bronze for swimming in Salford Quays. The furthest I have swum in open water is 1,500m.

“The school club is really good fun and it helps us to improve.”