Weekly Notices

CEO Update

Hi all, I hope these Notices find you well. We have packed Notices this week with info on club finances, competitive events, lottery winners and an update on the new pool. There’s some useful links in the text to various videos and additional information as well. Have a great weekend when it comes around.


November Training Fees

Please note that you have just received an automatically generated invoice from Go Cardless that will state the full December fees. Although we have partially completed the process of creating the 50% credits for people’s November training fees we have not yet applied this to individual accounts. As such it will not show on the invoice you have received. If it looks like we are able to return to the pool in December on the same basis we left it in November, we will apply the credits to individual accounts and your next invoice reminder will show the credit applied. Payment will be administered on 1st December.

You should also be aware that for those that have attended events such as the Huge 100’s, some of the credit will have been used and will therefore not equate to 50% of fees.

Trustee Meeting

Trustees met on Tuesday this week, primarily to maintain oversight of the charity’s finances and to confirm an approach to managing them over the coming months.

There was an appreciation that projected losses have been brought to manageable levels in the context of the reserves. Subject to no major issues arising, the major risk being a closure of lessons provision at Kings School pool, Trustees are happy to progress on the basis that no major changes, such as reductions in swimming provision, are necessary ahead of the new pool opening.

Trustees also agreed to freeze membership renewal fees, with a communication due out next week, and to increase the price of lessons.

Return to Swimming in December

We are planning on the basis of a return to swimming on the 3rd December, with timetables as they were pre-lockdown. We are hoping for greater clarity in the coming days on what coming out of national lockdown means locally, but are expecting sports and leisure provision to be protected if there are any changes. We are also waiting on final confirmation in the next few days from Oaklands pool that they can staff our December bookings, even though they are not open to the general public during the month.

AGM – Date for your Diary

In a first for the club, we will be hosting the AGM entirely online, for obvious reasons. We are thinking carefully about how we manage this effectively however for now the only thing you need to know is the provisional date:

Wednesday 27th January 2021, 7.30pm

New Pool Update

The Winchester Sport and Leisure Park Open Forum ‘met’ on Tuesday to receive updates on construction, plans form the Operator, and queries submitted to the council.

The headline is that construction is broadly on track and is due to open in Spring 2021. They are unwilling to be any more specific at this point due to the number of unknowns. They are however confident that even with lockdowns, a bad winter, and a few positive COVID cases (as they have had over the last few weeks), they can still complete and open by the end of June.

I recommend you look at the latest drone footage of the facility which can be found HERE. There are some great shots of the 50m pool that start at 1 minute 15. If you look at the far, blue wall they have created a feature of where the lane markings will be and extended them up the wall. If you want more detailed information you can see the slides presented by Wilmott Dixon by clicking HERE.

Competitive Swimming

Below we have write-ups from some of the competitive events we have managed to co-ordinate since we have been allowed to do so. We are so pleased to have been able to put these on knowing how important they are to our swimmers. We are very grateful to the coaches pulling together to put these on at such short notice and to all the volunteer officials who supported the events. THANK YOU!

Grand Prix 5 & Level X Time Trials

Update from Thelma Hawkings, Lead Coach and Event Organiser

Looking back to March we were all set up and ready to do GP3, just to be cancelled the week before when the pools closed. Sadly, the date for GP4 then came and went as well. However, we were then really pleased in October to be able to run the GP5 round to complete a 2020 series. GP5 was run over 4 sessions with 4 heats of 5 swimmers at each session. The event was run like a time trial with officials complying with Swim England’s Level X requirements.

Swimmers for the Grand Prix Series were from Foundation, Development & Junior Fitness squads, with the event also including Prep swimmers competing for their own event. The events for this round were the 100 Frs, 100 Back, 50 Frs and 50 Fly.

Most of the swimmers had competed in earlier rounds but it was particularly great that 16 new swimmers joined in and had a great time doing their first competition. There were so many amazing swims and over 90% of the swims were PBs, and many also achieved times for various levels of Swim England Sprint Awards. It was wonderful to see so many swimmers smiling, just enjoying the opportunity to be racing again, and being proud of their achievements.

Swimmers will be presented with their certificates & medals as soon as we’re back at the pool. As coaches we were also proud of the level of skill shown by the swimmers, it just shows that all that practice in training sessions really does pay off. So many fantastic streamlines and turns!

Just before this lockdown we did manage to run a time trial session for both Foundation & Development squads. Again, I was very proud of my swimmers and their results.

Huge 100’s

Update from Oli Purgavie, Lead Coach and Event Organiser

It was great to get this event in prior to the 2nd lockdown, and being able to put all the work from September till now into some races. Overall, everyone swam really well, especially as it was sorted in such a short space of time, with a total of 138 PBs across all the swimmers! There were some great takeaways from the swims and you have been or will be able to self analyse your swims from the videos that were taken.

Congratulations to the winners:

  • Kali Ruffell-Moreira (Girls 12/Under)
  • George Barfield (Boys 12/Under)
  • Lexi Rolls (Girls 13/Over)
  • Benedict Whitt (Boys 13/Over)

Stand Out Swims:

  • Ethan Skipwith – 100 Fly (29.91s PB)
  • Juno Middleton – 100 Fly (22.32s PB)
  • Alex Whittaker – 100 Back (13.99s PB)
  • Kali Ruffell-Moreira – 100 Back (13.61s PB)
  • Eloise Hardy – 100 Brs (21.39s PB)
  • George Barfield – 100 Brs (20.75s PB)
  • Damian Fraczek-Krygier – 100 Frs (10.89s PB)
  • Griff Thomas – 100 Frs (9.54s PB)

International Swimming League

News from Head Performance Coach, Zoe Baker, whilst on leave with the ISL in Budapest

The ISL has been a unique experience so far and we are now coming to the end of the final week. We have been privileged to been given the opportunity to have international racing during this time working this in with Covid regulations and restrictions. The matches have been fast and competitive and swimmers have progressively got better and better. To be able to witness world records during a global pandemic has demonstrated that during the toughest setbacks we can come out of this stronger and even better than we ever had ever imagined.

Both Imogen (WCPSC Elite squad swimmer) and I have been part of the Energy Standard Team for the last few weeks and we have progressed to the finals which take place on Saturday and Sunday. This team has been amazing and I’m proud to be associated with such a motivated and passionate group of athletes. Everyone is learning and growing and making the most of this fantastic opportunity.

We head into the last match in a very strong position after beating London Roar last week. The team is more than a group of individuals but is very strategic to who swims what and when. The jackpot system has made it even more interesting and swimmers can steal points (as well as money) from weaker swimmers which has proven to be a real game changer. Relays take precedent and the skins are crucial.

Imogen raced in Match 1 and was 4th behind the world record holder Lily King and world junior record holder Benedetta Pilato in the 50 breaststroke in a time of 29.8. She also made it to round 2 for the breaststroke skins event in a season best time of 29.7. In Match 2 she finished 4th in another world class field in the 50 breaststroke as well as swimming a fast 1.05.7 in the women’s medley relay. In Match 3 she was part of the Energy standard relay that took the silver medal and produced her fastest relay split ever in 1.05.2.

The team for the finals will not be announced until the team meeting late Friday night and we are in the last few days of fine tuning and preparations. I hope you have managed to tune in at home and are enjoying all the action. The final on Saturday starts at 3pm UK time and 5pm on Sunday.

Zoe has also captured a bonus video message for Winchester swimmers from Breeja Larson, Olympic Gold medallist. You can watch it HERE

Penguins Charity Lottery

The 27th Penguins Charity Lottery has been drawn for October. This months lucky winners are:

  • 1st Prize: Diederic Bulters (£50)
  • 2nd Prize: Lianne March (£30)
  • 3rd Prize: Stuart Tan (£20)

Congratulations to this months lucky winners and thank you to everyone who has taken part in our lottery so far. If you would like to join next months lottery and be in with a chance to win some cash whilst helping fundraise for the club please contact us at fundraising@wcpsc.org.uk with the following info:

  • Your Name
  • Child’s Name
  • Squad Name or Lesson Day
  • How Many Balls – £5 each

Please remember to sign up to easy fundraising it is free for you to use and will raise lots of money for the club while you shop. Just search for Winchester City Penguins to support our cause https://www.easyfundraising.org.uk

Thanks for your support,

The Fundraising Team