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Club Update

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- News

Following the Prime Minister’s recent briefing, I wanted to write to update you on various Club matters.

Firstly, during such a challenging time, I would like to thank our swimmers and parents for their continued support of the club.

Most recently the incredible spirit of the club has shone through via the 8-5-3 Challenge. An amazing £6047 has been raised so far – with more monies coming in each day. Well done and ‘thank you’ to all the swimmers who have set themselves challenges and helped raise much needed monies for the Club.

Coaching

Many of our swimmers have remained in contact with our Coaching Team – primarily via regular Zoom sessions – in order to maintain fitness during this break from the pool. This will really help as you look to return to the pool and I urge any swimmers who have not been attending to re-connect with your coach.

The addition of our ‘Olympic Special Guests’ to the Monday Education sessions have been a great success. These will continue and we have confirmation of 3 further Olympians lined up across the next month to spend time with you and answer your swimming questions.

Looking across the region we believe that we have offered the most extensive squad provision of any club and my thanks go to the coaching team for delivering such excellent work.

Club Development

Ahead of lockdown we hinted at extending the reach of the club and developing stronger links with other clubs in our area. I am delighted to advise that our proposal to create the ‘North Yorkshire Dales Club Network’ has been wholeheartedly backed by Swim North East and we are currently in the process of formally launching this initiative.

This will provide a fantastic learning hub for coaches in the region – and enable both Richmond and surrounding clubs the opportunity to develop ‘home-grown’ coaches for the future – all under the mentorship of our Head Coach, Ben Hatchett.

Return to Swimming

As we look to the period ahead and a time when we can return to the pool, we will be guided by our governing body – Swim England. Their excellent work and communication has confirmed that any return will not be before 4th July – but that clarity regarding a timeframe and potential restrictions will be published on 15th June. We will, of course, be in contact with both pool facilities well ahead of any potential re-opening to ensure that they will comply with the guidance offered by Swim England for the safety and security of all our swimmers.

Details of their guidance can be seen here:-

https://www.swimming.org/swimengland/guidance-publication-date/#.Xs4Y-OBxh0M.email

Further details regarding this guidance can be seen here:-

https://www.swimming.org/swimengland/jane-nickerson-explains-guidance-date/#.Xs4Yv1gfCis.email

Club Finances

Firstly, I would like to thank every member that has continued to pay their club fees during this prolonged period. These monies have really helped the club reduce our losses during this very difficult period.

Richmond Dales, like many other clubs and businesses, has been hit hard by the pandemic. Our traditional income streams have been severed and, in particular, our vital Gala income has been removed.

We have explored every possible means of grant aid and we are currently awaiting multiple decisions from bodies that will affect the running of the club in the future. Our intention is to prosper and grow and we have a plan in place that we believe will deliver a sustainable model for the club. Our challenge will be the next 12 months and I will endeavour to keep you all as fully informed as I can on the situation as it unfolds.

We do, unlike some other clubs and businesses, have an ace in our pack – you! I believe that we can and will get through this period – but your spirit and drive to help this club emerge from the current crisis will be needed now more than ever. The 8-5-3 initiative shows just what we can achieve when we work together for the good of the club and we may need you to step forward once more with a new fundraising initiative before year end.

If you have any questions about this or any other issue please do not hesitate to .

Take care, stay safe and we’ll soon be back in the water.

Richard Palmer-Jones

Chair – RDASC