Video: Olympian Mark Foster gives swimming lesson to Bransholme children
FIVE-times Olympic swimmer Mark Foster has been teaching children in North Bransholme the tricks of his trade.
The former World Champion and two-times Commmonwealth champion has taken to the pool once again to deliver a special master-class for young swimming enthusiasts.
A temporary pool was brought to the estate as part of the British Gas Pools 4 Schools programme, designed to inspire more young people to take the plunge and learn to swim.
Now, children from Highlands Primary School have had the chance to take part in a special swimming lesson at the North Bransholme Community Centre.
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Mark said he hopes the lessons will inspire young people to take up the sport and become more active.
"Being able to be part of this initiative is a big privilege and something I am delighted to be supporting," he said.
"If I can change one person's life and inspire them to do something in the future then that is wonderful.
"This programme is all about giving young people the opportunity to learn to swim. Swimming can have a positive effect not just on someone's physical life but their academic and professional lives too.
"For me, the legacy from the Olympic Games is about giving people the chance to take part in sport and if I can do that by sharing my experiences and abilities then that can only be a good thing."
The 12m by 6m pool, which was built by Total Swimming, has been open at the centre since November and will remain there until February 8.
Janet McCoid, chairman at the centre, is delighted with the success of the programme.
"To have an Olympian come to North Bransholme to teach the kids is fantastic," she said.
"I never thought the pool would be this well used. Hopefully, it will come back here and more people can enjoy it."
One in three children who leave primary school are unable to swim and the chance to be taught by an eight times world record holder was an exciting opportunity for the lucky pupils.
Amy Clinton, ten, of North Bransholme, said: "It was amazing to be able to swim with an Olympian. He made it look so easy.
"I never thought it would happen so it is really exciting."
Nine-year-old Kieran Pickering also took part in the swimming master class.
"It was very interesting listening to how be became a champion," he said.
Total Swimming works alongside The Amateur Swimming Association and Speedo to take the portable pools across the country in order to offer opportunities to some of the most deprived communities.
Chris Cooper, operational director at Total Swimming, said: "It is great to have the support of athletes like Mark. It is always a memorable experience for the kids and offers them a chance to learn to swim alongside one the best."