Swim Safe launches in Bridlington and Scarborough this summer
Free outdoor swimming and water safety sessions for 7 to 14-year-olds are returning to Bridlington and Scarborough this summer.
Swim Safe, the national programme created by Swim England and the RNLI, teaches children how to swim safely outdoors and what to do if they get into trouble in the water.
The 60-minute sessions are run by qualified swimming instructors and RNLI lifeguards and supported by a team of volunteers.
This summer’s Swim Safe sessions are being held at South Beach in Bridlington between 13 and 17 August and at North Bay in Scarborough between 6 and 10 August and from 21 to 24 August.
Children aged 7–14 that can swim at least 25 metres can take part. Wetsuits and swim hats will be provided for the session and all young people will get a free goody bag and t-shirt.
In Bridlington and Scarborough, the funds to run the programme were raised as part of the Andrew McGeown Legacy fund. Andrew was a well-loved local man who tragically died despite efforts by Scarborough RNLI volunteer lifeboat crew to rescue him after going into the water to rescue his dog.
Donna Loveland, Andrew McGeown's sister and a Swim Safe Coordinator in Yorkshire, said: ‘We’re really delighted to have raised the funds needed to run Swim Safe in Scarborough and Bridlington in Andrew’s memory.
‘I know that Andrew would be pleased to know that because of him hundreds of young people will grow up with a better understanding of how to stay safe by the sea.’
Donna added: ‘The programme is vital as children love swimming outdoors, but swimming in the sea, rivers or lakes is very different to swimming in a pool, where most children learn.
‘Swim Safe is a free, fun activity that teaches kids lifelong skills that will help them enjoy open water safely.’
Parents and carers are welcome to stay during the session to find out more about making sure their children are safe at the beach and by the water.
Tina Boden, Chair of the Andrew McGeown Legacy Fund, said: 'Thanks to our fantastic fundraisers, donators and supporters the Andrew McGeown Legacy Fund has been able to bring the Swim Safe programme to the Yorkshire Coast for the third year running.
‘This year we are so pleased to be able to offer three weeks of sessions thanks to money raised and help from volunteers to deliver this essential information to young people through interactive sessions.'
Places are free to book at swimsafe.org.uk and children only need to bring their swim suit and a towel.
RNLI (regional): Megan McBride, RNLI Regional Media Engagement North East and East, on 0191 5269158 or firstname.lastname@example.org, or Clare Hopps, RNLI Regional Media Officer, North East and East, on 07824 518641 or at email@example.com.
RNLI (national): Mike Carhart-Harris, Public Relations Manager (Campaigns), on 01202 663168 / firstname.lastname@example.org
Swim England: Alison Clowes, Head of Media and Public Affairs, on 07919 548039 / email@example.com
Key facts about the RNLI
The RNLI charity saves lives at sea. Its volunteers provide a 24-hour search and rescue service around the United Kingdom and Republic of Ireland coasts. The RNLI operates over 238 lifeboat stations in the UK and Ireland and, in a normal year, more than 240 lifeguard units on beaches around the UK and Channel Islands. The RNLI is independent of Coastguard and government and depends on voluntary donations and legacies to maintain its rescue service. Since the RNLI was founded in 1824, its lifeboat crews and lifeguards have saved over 142,700 lives.