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Isle of Man Swimming Association
Isle of Man Swimming Association
 
Southern I.o.M Amateur Swimming Club History
Isle of Man Flag


The club has been in existence since January 1979 when Mr John Martin, a local headmaster, had the idea of forming a swimming club following the opening of the new pool at Castletown and contacted many local residents who had links with swimming.

At the inaugural meeting were Jacquie Kelly, then Jacquie James and Mrs Kath Gorry who continue to be involved to this day. Among 80 plus swimmers who signed up in the first few weeks were David Glover, who later competed in the 1990 Commonwealth Games in Auckland New Zealand and Mark Gorry. Both competed in many Island games and represented the Island many times. Mark is now our club coach spending many Tuesday evenings on poolside alongside David who also teaches now that his children attend our sessions.

Ian Harrop joined the club in October 1979 and has been the guiding light of our club since his arrival, along with his wife Joan who has been chief fundraiser throughout the years. With 3 children who all competed for us Ian has contributed more than anyone to the success of the club, taking all the necessary qualifications along the way to build a formidable and popular coach who likes to include as many miles as possible in his training schedules. Ian has been Chairman for the past 20 years and he has been Team Manager for the Island Games many times since they started in 1985. He has also represented our governing body at the Commonwealth Games Association meetings for 20 years and has been Team Manager representing swimming at the Commonwealth Games in Kuala Lumpur.

In Manchester Ian was overall manager in charge of all sports for the Isle of Man Team in the Commonwealth Games 2002. Ianís son Dane is now an honorary swimming member of our club having represented both club and Island at many Island Games winning several Gold Medals and at the Commonwealth Games in Kuala Lumpur in 1998 and Manchester in 2002. Dane now works in the north of England and still competes in the North West and on the Island, swimming with us when he visits the Island.

We are now into our second generation of pupils and feel fortunate that many past swimmers now teach/coach for us on a regular basis. These include Ruth Crellin, a many times Island games competitor and more recently James Kewley who has had to give up swim training because of a shoulder injury.

We presently have more than 200 members who swim every week, with 90 of them training regularly for competitions on and off the Island.