Weekly Notices

9 October 20200

CEO Update

Welcome to WCPSC’s Weekly Notices. It’s been a little whilst since I last provided an update but I just wanted to focus on two things today, namely the current COVID measures and then the financial situation.

In relation to COVID, we are seeing a serious uptick in local cases. In fact, we now have a number of swimmers in self-isolation as a result of being in contact with people who have COVID. This is one step away from one of our swimmers having COVID, which seems only a matter of time.

We are now looking to be extra vigilant on our precautionary measures to minimise the risk of virus transmission. I still see and hear about a lack of social distancing, particularly from our older squad swimmers. I know that this isn’t unique to us and that some children have a false sense of security by being with the same children in a bubble at school, however we need to protect each other and ensure swimming can continue for all where possible.

I have asked the coaching team to raise the awareness of the importance of following our current measures and to be firm (but fair) with swimmers where required. We also need you to play your part in discussing the importance of this with your swimmer(s).

In tightening up a little we are certainly not aiming to extract the enjoyment out of people’s swimming, simply refocusing some of our energy on ensuring we can continue to swim.

Onto the charity’s financial position. We have been working extremely hard to bring down the significant month-on-month losses that were projected at the start of the year. Through the work of the team we have managed to negotiate some short-term pool hire reductions and increase lessons income but have also had to reduce the number of causal coaching hours provided within the squad programme. This has allowed us to continue to provide the full timetable we have for now. We are now currently working off average projected losses of £7k a month October to December, and beyond if nothing changes. Although we have some reserves in place, these are obviously not sustainable figures for any great length of time so Trustees are continuing to look at the options we have and when it would be necessary to implement those options. Obviously, things would be made more difficult if we faced another lockdown with no means of recovering costs. The intention here is not to paint a bleak financial picture, but just to be transparent in the challenges we are facing and the discussions Trustees are having. We are confident we will find a way through this period and recognise that we are certainly not alone in facing these circumstances.

Have a great weekend,


Squad Swimming News & Selections

Although it is an odd kind of swimming season with no open meets or team competitions, WCPSC swimmers are very fortunate to be back in the water training hard whilst many clubs are faced with pool closures or very limited timetables.

Swim England is currently trialling a virtual competition called Level X with a view to keeping club swimmers in the racing habit before open meets return, we sincerely hope, in 2021. The new format will enable swimmers to compete against others from across the country from within their own training sessions.

In the meantime, WCPSC swimmers have been selected for a variety of teams and programmes based on their performances prior to lockdown.

Imogen Clark has been selected for the second season to swim for the Energy Standard Team in the International Swimming League (ISL) which will take place in Budapest, Hungary beginning later this month. Some of the world’s best swimmers will compete in the rounds of the competition during October and November with the finale likely to happen in Tokyo in the last week of December. More information about ISL is available at isl.global, reports and results on swimswam.com and most exciting of all, the ISL rounds will be televised on Eurosport.

Kayla van der Merwe has been selected for the British Swimming World Class Programme for the 2020/21 Olympic season. The athletes on the WCP are split across Podium and Podium Potential tiers and will receive programme opportunities and targeted support from UK Sport through the World Class Performance Programme’s Athlete Performance Award. Kayla trains one day every week at the National Performance Centre in Bath.

Iona Morley has been invited to the Scottish National Programme 2020/21 for the butterfly and distance camps and took part in a butterfly camp on September 6th.

Charlotte Prince-Rayner and Kate Baxter have been being selected for the DiSE (Diploma in Sporting Excellence) programme, for swimmers who achieve a nationally ranked top 6 performance and are studying for A levels. The programme, which earns UCAS points, is a 2 year study and swimming programme designed to help athletes determine their next steps in aquatic sport.

Anoush Sanjar, Ben Hatfield, Mia Goodale and Zakhos Lekkas were selected for the Swim England National Talent Development Camp 2020. Due to COVID-19 restrictions, the swimmers were invited to attend a virtual online series of presentations and discuss the National pathway provided by Swim England Talent programme. The swimmers met in a local hotel where they logged onto a varied programme of presentations about land training, injury prevention, goal setting, training environment and the importance of sleep and recovery.

This Autumn, 3 WCPSC swimmers have joined performance programmes at UK Universities. Tom Menlove and Fergus Phelan have joined the distance and sprint programmes at the University of Bath whilst Jack Morgans is studying at the University of Manchester and swimming with the City of Manchester Swimming Club squad.

Earlier this year, Head Performance Coach, Zoe Baker, was selected as a Swim England National Junior Coach for the FFN Golden Tour event in Nice. She was also selected to the prestigious Women into High Performance (WiHP) programme and you can read about her experience of coaching performance swimmers through lockdown at https://www.swimming.org/sport/zoe-baker-coaching-story/. Most recently Zoe was selected as a coach for the Energy Standard Team at the ISL Solidarity Camp in October.

Penguins Charity Lottery

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

  • 1st Prize: Mark Whittaker (£48)
  • 2nd Prize: Mark Whittaker (£28.80)
  • 3rd Prize: Clare Rowe (£19.20)

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

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