Our Story So Far
Our Story So Far
Our Story So Far
Our Story So Far
Our story so far
Our Story So Far
Neil Bailey Swimming has been teaching children to swim for over 8 years. In that time, the company has successfully taught over 10,000 swimmers. Founded by Neil Bailey, a fully qualified ASA swimming instructor, the swim school was set up as he believed that there was an acute shortage of quality teaching in the area. Neil Bailey Swimming is a business with family values, which has been the inspiration for our approach to teaching swimming – “teaching people to swim as if they were members of our own family”
Neil Bailey Swimming originally started as a team of volunteers from Bourne End Swimming Club, who were delivering lessons to the local community at Court Garden Swimming Pool in Marlow. These lessons offered classes for beginners up to strong, pre-club level swimmers using skills developed over a number of decades.
Two things happened to us as a group that led us to adopt and test a different approach to teaching. Firstly, we began to be regularly approached by parents with children who had additional needs and required extra help in the water to participate in swimming lessons, we also started to meet several families who had children that did not get on well with traditional poolside instruction. To get results for these children, we had to develop new strategies of teaching – more specifically, a less poolside orientated teaching method. Secondly, we were approached by two different School Sports Partnerships, to help provide lessons to a much larger volume of children at or about primary school age (at the time 65% of primary school aged children could not swim.) To deliver this, we were given a budget of £6000 per annum, so we began running Top Up Swimming crash courses to Key Stage Two children. This process quickly highlighted a huge latent demand for swimming lessons across all ethnic and social groups that was not being met. The first course we ran had 120 people join up the night before our first lesson – the courses were a great success and we were at peak, teaching 600 a week.
Neil Bailey became the Chair of a local SWAG (Swimming Action Group) a link organisation of Amateur Swimming Association (now Swim England), Wycombe District Council, Wycombe District Swimming Club and Bourne End Junior Sports Club – all parties started to promote all aspects of swimming in the community.
From all these lessons learned, Neil Bailey contacted six local schools in the area, offering to help them save, build or upgrade their pools. We gained explicit contacts from all six, all with different outcomes – one school closed their pool, one used our experience to bid for and obtain significant government funding, one of the schools worked with us from the planning stage, and built a pool we now use. Another worked with us and together we raised the necessary funds to start school swimming lessons for years 1 to 6 for most of the school year. One school worked with us initially, but has delayed the implementation of an upgrade programme. We viewed these projects as a great learning curve, and by now had serious levels of experience; we had seen pools built, and had helped fundraise several million pounds for more pool time, which meant more swimmers and to teach them we built a great swimming teaching team from scratch. Our team developed much higher levels of inclusion for all social, ethnic and special needs groups into a unique mixed ability delivery model.
2010 was a fantastic year for Neil Bailey Swimming. We worked with the Holywell Mead Pool Steering Group, where Neil was the chair and persuaded Wycombe District Council to revisit their decision to close the Holywell Mead Pool – a beautiful open-air lido, in an award winning park. It was subsequently reopened and renamed The Wycombe Rye Lido, which is easily one of the best facilities of its type for many miles. High March School opened a stunning new 20-metre swimming pool, built to a great standard and we start running intensive holiday courses there – for which local demand was huge. We also helped Cedar Park School raise the money and create a capital project to roof their open-air pool for all weather, all year use – which for a state primary school was a courageous and well-executed project. Their school swimming standard is now one of the best state school swimming offers in the country.
2017 – We have developed one of the largest self-made teaching teams in the country, teaching over 1000 children a week, and delivering high quality lessons for children from the age of three and up from diverse social and ethnic backgrounds.
Our 2019 chapter –
Following nine years of use of two pools we are now expanding into new venues – each with their own unique attributes…
We are now using a beautiful small deep pool in Amersham Road in High Wycombe – it is ideal for teaching children and adults alike. We are offering private sessions there during weekdays and these have helped many people with a variety of needs continue their swimming progression.
Having found one new beautiful pool we are now using two more – the beautiful Cherry Tree Farm Swimming Pool in Great Kingshill. A splendid pool in it’s own log cabin, set in a beautiful part of the world. We have a Ladies That Swim group who meet there on a Monday morning – these four ladies are able to access our swimming tuition on a regular basis
Then we have a very different experience. An architecturally splendid pool in Lane End in a beautiful fully tiled setting with it’s own amazing murals. This pool is warm, friendly and features a counter current system that allows us to teach and mentor all age ranges from child to adult in a short timescale.
During this year we have now developed and delivered one of the largest concurrent one 2 one programmes in the country this has seen us teach up to eight children with eight teachers and up to eight adults in age range from 20 – 80 in the pool at the same time being taught by eight teachers we know of no other programme in the UK like it.
To celebrate over 10 years of delivery and over 10,000 swimmers we are embarking on a celebratory year of community involvement – starting with in December we shall be partnering with Wycombe Abbey and Bucks School Swimming Forum to deliver a specialist version of our highly recommended group intensive swimming lessons. We shall be donating 360 spaces across four days for free to our local community.
Then during 2019 – 2020 – we shall continue with this work in partnering with the Bucks Fire Service to help deliver a variety of water safety community information and several in water experiences where we take groups of our local community to water and teach them water safety skills for themselves and their own local community. We hope to reach 1000’s of our community with this vital skill set.
There have been some big changes in 2019 and we wonder what 2020 holds for us…
Join the Neil Bailey Swimming Family Today
Via the button below you can view our available lessons on the calendar page, where you can also book on. For enquiries about courses or venues, please contact us directly either by email, firstname.lastname@example.org, or by phone on 07938629129