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Swimming - 26. May 2007.


People in Suffolk are being given the opportunity to get in the swim through Everyday Swim's Suffolk Swim Weekend running from 9-10 June.
The pioneering project, led by the Amateur Swimming Association (ASA) and funded by Sport England, aims to break down the barriers of participation in swimming to affect a culture change across the country to get more people in the pool, and Suffolk Swim Weekend will target all people in the area.
Regardless of age and ability, Suffolk Swim Weekend will give people the opportunity to get active in the pool for a taster session around the county.
Suffolk County Council, Suffolk Strategic Partnership and Suffolk Sport, is coordinating the first ever Suffolk Swim Weekend with the help of the ASA.
Activities vary at each participating pool, from family fun sessions to lifesaving and snorkelling lessons. Most sessions are free but anyone wishing to take part in the adult learn-to-swim sessions should book in advance as demand is expected to be high and spaces are limited.
Up to one in five adults in the UK are unable to swim and statistics show a significant fall in participation swimming when people reach the age of 45. Many adults stop swimming when their children become independent enough to go swimming on their own, while a large number of adults never learn to swim because they didn't have the opportunity at a younger age.
Swimming is one of the few forms of exercise that can be enjoyed by people of all ages, and is not weight-bearing so it can benefit all as it is not dependent on fitness or physical ability.
Former Olympic swimming champion and Everyday Swim Ambassador Duncan Goodhew will be touring the county for the Suffolk Swim Weekend to join in the fun and introduce local people to the benefits of swimming.
"The Suffolk Swim Weekend is a fantastic opportunity for local people to find out what the county's pools have to offer," said Duncan. "There are so many activities going on in all seven districts, there's something for everyone no matter what your swimming ability.
"If you can't swim or lack confidence in swimming the Suffolk Swim Weekend is a great opportunity to find out what you're missing. I count myself lucky because I learnt to swim as a child but many people never had the chance. Around one in five adults can't swim but if enough people sign up for the taster lessons we can reduce that figure in Suffolk and get more people into the pool for fun, fitness and good health."
Councillor Graham Newman, Suffolk County Council's portfolio holder for Adult and Community Services wants as many people in the area to get involved in the event.
"Suffolk Swim Weekend provides an excellent opportunity for the people of Suffolk to reignite their enthusiasm and appreciation of swimming and other pool activities,"
"We have some great swimming facilities in the county and I would encourage individuals and families to get involved. By taking the plunge this weekend we all have the opportunity to make a positive impact on our general health and well being, and of course enjoy ourselves with friends and families."
Participating venues are as follows:

Kingfisher Leisure Centre, Station Road, Sudbury, Suffolk, CO10 2SU Tel: 01787 375656
Hadleigh Swimming Pool, Stonehouse Road, Hadleigh, Suffolk, IP7 5BH, Tel: 01473 823470
Mildenhall Swimming Pool, Recreation Way, Mildenhall, Suffolk IP28 7HG, Tel: 01638 712515 www.forest-heath.gov.uk (for the most up-to-date programs)
Newmarket Swimming Pool, 218 High Street, Newmarket, Suffolk CB8 9AP, Tel: 01638 661736 www.forest-heath.gov.uk (for the most up-to-date programs)
Crown Pools, Crown Street, Ipswich, IP1 3JA, Tel: 01473 433655 www.ibcsport.co.uk
Bury St Edmunds Leisure Centre, Beetons Way, IP33 3TT, Tel: 01284 753496 www.acleisure.com
Haverhill Leisure Centre, Ehringshausen Way, Suffolk, CB9 OER Tel: 01440 702548 www.acleisure.com
Mid Suffolk Leisure Centre, Gainsborough Road, Stowmarket, IP14 1LH, Tel: 01449 674980
Waveney Sports & Leisure Centre, Water Lane, Lowestoft, Tel: 01502 569116
Waveney Valley Pool, St. John's Hill, Bungay, Tel: 01986 895014
Felixstowe Leisure Centre, The Sea Front, Felixstowe, Suffolk, IP11 2AE,Tel: 01394 670411 www.felixstoweleisurecentre.co.uk
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