A Brief History of International Diving in Southend
Southend Diving* registered with the ASA as a new Club in April 2011 to facilitate divers of the new Southend Diving program competing in County, Regional and National competition.
Southend has a very long and successful history of success beginning when local Coach and former National diver, Bill Clark, set up the first Diving program in the the late 70’s. Since that time many hundreds of divers from beginners to National Champions have enjoyed success, culminating with Southend’s first Olympian Alison Childs competing at the 1984 Olympic in Los Angeles. Following in Alison’s footsteps were many more aspiring young divers, reaching national and international level. Victoria Stenning competed at all major Internationals including the Commonwealth Games in Canada `94 – very narrowly missing Olympic selection two years later in contentious circumstances. Southend’s tradition of success then continued with Karen Smith, Sydney Olympics 2000 and Tracey Richardson in Athens 2004 – and now Southend is searching for our next Olympians!
This enviable and consistent international track record pays tribute to the dedication of ALL the divers, coaches and teachers who played such an important part in that amazing history for some 30 plus years. One very important stage in the process came about when Kim White joined me at Southend with a squad of very talented divers including future Olympians Hayley Allen and Tony Ali. It was a partnership that worked very well and produced some great results that included winning the coveted Dawdon Shield in 1987. What a Team! A photo taken at the time included 7 future Internationals divers – an amazing achievement. (Kim left Southend to be the Olympic Coach for Norway, has been the GB National Coach and is currently the GB Diving Team Manager)
The new World Class Diving Centre is in many ways a recognition of the many years of sterling effort from the coaches and performances of the divers and now provides a fantastic opportunity for us to continue the traditions of diving in Southend for many more years to come.
The Club was originally based at the old Warrior Square Pool in the centre of Southend. The facilities there were very basic, with just 1 x 1m, 1 x 3m, and 1 x 5m boards that necessitated divers having to travel to train at other Diving centres and gymnasiums in order to get the time and facilities needed to produce Champions.
The new Southend Diving Program will continue working with the local Schools with talent testing initiatives and to provide opportunities to youngsters. With these great new facilities and the excellent coaching staff available, there is absolutely no reason why Southend can’t unearth and develop more diving stars and Olympians for the future.
*Note: The new Southend Diving program is being delivered by Legacy Leisure, the leisure provider for the Southend Council. The program is based in the Southend World Class Diving Centre that opened in November 2010 and was the GB Diving Team base Camp for the London Olympic Games 2012.
Learn To Dive Courses
Come and take part in the exciting sport of diving.
If you can swim 50 metres confidently in deep water then our fully qualified instructors will teach you how to spin flip and twist into the water in a variety of feet first and head first entries.
Learn To Dive 1-5 – Children’s Classes aged 6-12 years old
A series of progressive classes where fully qualified instructors follow a structured scheme of work which guides you through a Nationally recognised award scheme. Classes are 30 minutes in duration and courses last between 10-12 weeks.
Classes available most weekday evenings and weekends
Learn To Dive Teens – aged 13-16
This is a specifically designed class for teenagers. The instructor will still utilise the National Award Scheme but the session will be more flexible allowing the teens to work towards some of their own goals.
Learn To Dive Adults – Aged 16 upwards
These are great fun and allow you to keep fit and meet new people. Sessions will be flexible and allow you work on your own goals. There is also the opportunity to progress into out Masters training squad for Adults.
Dive Camps run during school holidays. They are available to children currently in Learn to Dive Classes or to completely new beginners. The camps include two pool sessions and two dry gym sessions. They will only run on selected days during school holidays and further details
For all enquiries relating to Learn to Dive courses please contact Legacy Leisure’s Diving Programme on
01702 442911 or e-mail Sheila Thompson at firstname.lastname@example.org
Southend Leisure & Tennis Centre