Taking the plunge – Hillside pool reopens for swim tuition and more

THERE is a new look and a new face for the fresh start to swimming tuition at Saddleworth’s stunning indoor pool with a view.

Manor House Barn on Mill Lane, Dobcross has provided bespoke swimming lessons and aqua activity at its 25metre pool for more than four years.

Now, following lockdown, the first-class facility fully reopened on Monday, April 19. It does so with extended changing facilities offering increased capacity, office space and vastly experienced manager Jon Keating to oversee the swimming programme and future development.

Jon arrives from Swim England, where he spent six years as Club Development Director having been with the organisation’s predecessor – the Amateur Swimming Association – for eight years.

He is also on the board of directors at Active Tameside.

Jon succeeds Diggle’s former Olympic swimmer Jessica Lloyd in the role and is described by Manor House Barn director Jane Dronsfield as “our golden ticket”.

Jon Keating

Jane said: “We are lucky to have someone who has worked nationally across thousands of swimming clubs, both at elite and club level.

“He will develop all our aqua programmes and hopefully extend into other venues as and when we can find more pool space.

‘I have worked previously with Jon and now we can utilise his skills and train some of our own people as well.

Shower area

“It is an exciting time. Not only can we extend what we already offered for babies, pre-school and learn to swim, we can do so much more during the day because of the extra changing facility, including float fit and aqua aerobics for adults.

“We also now have a staff member with the required qualifications to be able to take on referral work if a GP recommends swimming as a good option for recovery.

“This might be for someone with a heart condition, a person with obesity issues or even just physio where you need non-weight bearing exercise.”

Lessons for babies start from the age of three months while children’s lessons, on one-to-one basis or two-to-one classes, begin from three upwards.

So, whether you’re a beginner or expert swimmer Manor House Barn have the right programme for you.

The facility was created by ex-Great British Swimmer and Commonwealth Games medallist Steven Dronsfield initially to teach his own youngsters to swim and then in November 2017 to become part of the nationwide Swimming Nature programme.

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