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Iain Young

Today, it is with great sadness that we must say (a very sad) farewell to our loyal friend and stalwart volunteer Iain Young.

Iain first started out as a parent volunteer when his three children Hannah, David and Charlotte swam at the club. He was happy to help in any role and tried his hand at most, including training to be a swimming teacher. But it soon became apparent that his passion lay in the role as a technical official and over the years rose through the ranks to the esteemed position of referee.

Iain continued to support the club even after his children had grown up and left. With the support of a small team of volunteers, Iain started organising several swimming competitions across the Region. This not only gave swimmers from Richmond Dales the opportunity to race, but also helped the club financially. The galas were a huge success and over the years have raised thousands of much needed pounds and helped keep the club afloat! Iain had no intention of retiring and even in the last few days before he passed away, he was checking to see what was happening with our ‘Back to Pool gala’ in September.

Iain gave over 20 years of loyal service to swimming, not only supporting swimmers at Richmond Dales, but right across the North East and Yorkshire Region. Iain was highly regarded and respected and held many prestigious positions including Northumberland and County President and was a member of the North East Regional Board. Iain continued to make an impact wherever he went and was responsible for training numerous officials – he had a persuasive nature and it was very hard to say no to Iain, and before you knew it you’d signed up to be a timekeeper!

Iain was always in demand and each weekend, usually with a couple of his fellow referees, he would set off early in the morning to travel to a swimming club somewhere in the North East and Yorkshire. He would work tirelessly all weekend to make sure all the swimmers had a fantastic experience and the opportunity to race. Iain would help anyone, but he had a few favourite clubs and they were usually the ones who served a good buffet and remembered he liked extra cream with his cream cake! His generosity of spirit and larger than life sense of humour drew people to him and brought them around to his way of thinking.

Iain’s commitment to the sport (more importantly, to the swimmers) is going to be a great loss and we pass on our sincere condolences to his family who feel his loss the most. The family have asked that if you would like to make a donation in his memory, to support ‘The Friends of Richmond Friary Community Hospital’ who cared for Iain and were a great support to the family when he was ill.

They are a very small registered charity, so donations can be sent directly as cash or cheque payment or if you would prefer to send your donation (via BACs) to the club, we will then collate all the payments and make one donation from all the members (past and present).

Account Name: Richmond Dales ASC
Sort Code: 54-30-43
Account Number: 02230798
Please reference your donation: For Iain Young

Please can we ask that all donations are sent to the club by Friday 16th July. We will then arrange to present the cheque on behalf of the club to Iain’s family and the Richmond Friary Hospital.

Iain’s generosity of spirit will always be alive at Richmond Dales and it is our duty to ensure his philosophy of always putting the swimmer first stays at the forefront of everything we do. So, let’s raise a glass to Iain and thank him for the memories, his enduring support and for inspiring generations of swimmers past and present.


Level X Results – 24th June

Fantastic evening of racing, with so many notable swims!

Several swimmers achieved the consideration standard for the N&D Summer Meet, please contact your coach if you think you have a consideration time.

Back – 24.06.21

Brst – 24.06.21

Fly – 24.06.21

Free – 24.06.21

Coaches to deliver on their 10k promise

Earlier this year we were successful in raising an amazing £23,725 through our 10k for 10k crowdfunding campaign. To say thank you to everyone who supported the club, our swimmers, coaches and volunteers promised to run, walk, swim or cycle 10k in recognition of the support received.

Coaches Zoe Cowan and Keith Hall took this idea to the extreme and decided to jump out of a plane at 10,000 feet instead! This crazy idea gets first prize for being the most courageous and with only just over 6 weeks to go until the jump we’d love them to meet their targets of raising £500 each.

Even with the funding we’ve already secured, with the uncertainty remaining around the running of gala’s, the financial situation for the club continues to remain uncertain.

We hope that you can continue to support Keith and Zoe and help them smash their total and secure our amazing club’s future.

Donation link




Why have we chosen to do a parachute jump ?

Keith says

“As coaches we spend a lot of our time challenging and pushing our swimmers to do things they didn’t think they could, taking them out of comfort zones and really pushing them. I think it’s time I pushed myself out of my comfort zone and pushed myself to do something that tests me. I have done a lot of challenging things but a parachute jump has always been the one thing that really does scare me.

The jump is from 10,000 ft so that’s my 10k challenge.

By doing this I hope swimmers, parents, family & friends and the wider community are able to push themselves a little further by sponsoring our parachute jumps and helping the club pass their target. I want to help secure the future of the club that has given so much to my own children and hundreds of others, no matter what their ability.”

Zoe’s says :-

”A parachute jump is something that I have always wanted to do, but has not quite been the right time.  We spend everyday encouraging swimmers to face their fears to be the best they can be…. whether it’s on the block to do their first standing dive or swimming the 800m Freestyle for the first time. It’s overcoming the fear of the unknown and taking yourself out of your comfort zone, but then to stand proud afterwards with the feeling that you have accomplished something new and are now a better person for doing so.

Richmond Dales has given me so much over the past 20 months, building my confidence, working with all the fantastic swimmers and becoming my second family. I have chosen to do my 10k by jumping out of a plane at 10,000ft as a way of saying “Thank you” to the club for making me feel so at home and I’m hoping swimmers, friends and family will support me in sponsoring me for this jump so we can help the club smash their target.

Partnership | Strokes Ahead Learn-to-Swim

We are pleased to announce our second learn-to-swim partnership, this time with Strokes Ahead LTS.

Strokes Ahead are based in County Durham, currently operating out of three venues in Shotton Colliery, High Tunstall (Hartlepool) and Longfield Academy (Darlington). They offer low ratio lessons with no more than 6 in a group. In addition, they offer 121 lessons and a Competitive Development programme that will feed into our junior section, here at Richmond Dales.

For more information on the provisions they offer, please visit their website – Strokes Ahead

Ben Hatchett, Head Coach @ RDASC, commented:
“We are pleased to add another learn-to-swim scheme to our growing network. The quality of lessons and the support provided at Strokes Ahead is one of the best and with their Swim England Swim School of the Year nomination, we are delighted that their swimmers will have the option of joining Richmond Dales once the team believe they’re ready to make the transition. Similar to our partnership with Lillypad, we will provide support to Strokes Ahead to ensure their longevity and that their swimmers have a positive experience and a clear pathway.”

Partnership | Lillypad Learn-to-Swim

We are delighted to announce that Richmond Dales has formalised a partnership with Lillypad Swimmers, Learn-to-Swim scheme.

The aim of the Learn-to-Swim Partnership is to provide a pathway for swimmers in the learn-to-swim scheme to seamlessly transition into the Development club programme at Richmond Dales ASC.

In return, RDASC will provide Lillypad swimmers with additional social media and advertisement coverage of services, CPD and mentoring opportunities for teaching staff that may want to become coaches or learn more about competitive swimming, assistance with staff recruitment and other partnership benefits.

Lillypad Swimmers currently operate high-quality lessons at Scotch Corner and Barnard Castle; for more information, visit their website – Lillypad Swimmers

Ben Hatchett, Head Coach @ RDASC, commented:
“We are really pleased that Lillypad have come on board with the partnership. We want to be able to provide as many swimmers in the local area with the opportunity to experience and enjoy club swimming at Richmond Dales. By forming this partnership we are able to offer those that have lessons at Lillypad with a seamless transition into the club. We are delighted that we can also provide Lillypad with assistance and services, to maximise swimming lesson uptake at their venues and broaden their exposure in the area.”

Level X Series 2 (Race Night 1) – 13th May

Attached are the results for the first Race Night, in the second series of the Level X competition.

Well done to all swimmers involved and thanks to the volunteers who gave up their time to make the event happen!

Our next Race Night, is due to be held on Thursday 17th June.

LX Results 13.05.21 – 25m & 50m Events

LX Results 13.05.21 – 100m Events

Ben & The Coaching Team