News Archive 2010 July-December

National Championships Report


Written by Administrator   

Saturday, 07 August 2010

Two Bristol Henleaze swimmers qualified for this year’s national championships and represented City of Bristol at Ponds Forge, Sheffield. It is an excellent achievement to get a national qualifying time and both of our swimmers reached the mark in no less than five events which is outstanding.

Abi Bowring (12) swam in the age group championships and her events were 100m and 200m backstroke, 200m breaststroke and 200m and 400m individual medley. Abi did PB’s in three events and made two finals. She was fifth in the 200m IM final and 6th in the 200m breaststroke final. Abi showed great character in both finals and improved her time and placing from the heats. In the 400m IM she was 11th so just missed out on a (ten lane) final place. As first reserve for a final the swimmer has to warm up and prepare for the race as normal and report to the call rooms usually to find everyone has turned up and they don’t get a swim – more stressful than swimming the event!.

Rebecca Guy (17) swam in the youth championships and her events were 50m, 100m and 200m freestyle and 200m and 400m individual medley. Rebecca also did PB’s in three events and made the semi final in the 100m freestyle only to be placed 11th so missed out on a final place. In the heats for the 50m freestyle she swam a PB to be fastest qualifier out of 136 swimmers, this was followed by 2nd place in the semi finals and in a closely fought final she did another PB (26.36 seconds) and won the gold and was crowned national champion. Bristol Henleaze has never had a national champion and it is indeed a long time since Bristol had a national champion so quite a day!

Congratulations to both swimmers on their magnificent achievements.


Last Updated ( Friday, 22 April 2011 )


Gloucester City Open Meet


Written by Administrator   

Wednesday, 11 August 2010

Three Bristol Henleaze swimmers entered the Gloucester City Open Meet  back in June, Curtis O’Connor, Courtney O’Connor and Molly Huckle.  The weekend was long and exhausting Courtney obtained 8 PB’s with a 26PB in her 100IM, well done Courtney.  Molly achieved 3 PB’s  and three well deserved medals in her 50 back, 50 free and 100IM, well done Molly.

Curtis entered a staggering 13 events (oops my fault) and managed to walk away with 13 medals, a gold in 50 free,  silver in 50 fly, and  bronzes in 400 free, 100 free and 50 breast.  He also managed to obtain best 14 year old of the weekend and received a trophy for this.

 Congratulations to these swimers from all at BHSC.

Last Updated ( Friday, 22 April 2011 )


Harding Paddock Memorial Gala Report


Written by Brian Guy   

Sunday, 12 September 2010

Another swimming season is upon us and our first competitive outing was the Harding Paddock Memorial Gala for the Bristol Henleaze Shield on Saturday 11th September at Horfield. This gala is kindly sponsored by Mr Peter White and we thank him very much for this and it was a great pleasure to welcome Jack Harding an ex BHSC swimmer representing the family at the event.

The gala was to national swimming league format with eight clubs taking part. We got off to a cracking start with the open 100m IM’s - Jane Garry was in a dead heat for first in a PB and Luke Porter won his race in a PB. It soon became apparent that our main rivals would be the team from Southwold. The lead changed hands several times until Oliver Eyre stormed away to win event 32 (the boys 15/under 100m freestyle) and we then pulled away to a comfortable win. We last won the Bristol Henleaze Shield in 2002 and it was great to see it coming home – Jack Harding presented the trophy to Rebecca Allen our ladies captain.

All swimmers turned up and we had no less than 10 individual wins out of 34 events. The individual winners were Abi Bowring (2), Oliver Eyre (2), Sam Youngman, Sam Marshall, Jane Garry, Rebecca Allen, Luke Porter and Ashley St Leger. We had  5 wins in the relays and they were boys 11/under freestyle (Matthew Webley, Oscar Waugh, Barnaby Taylor and Sam Marshall), boys 11/under medley (Sam Youngman, Barnaby Taylor, Sam Marshall and Matthew Webley), the ladies open freestyle (Megan McLernon, Katie McLernon, Abi Bowring, Jess Hicks, Jane Garry and Rebecca Allen), the men’s open medley (Eddy Wragg, Luke Porter, Damian Williams and Ashley St Leger) and the final event of the evening the men’s freestyle ( Matt Eskell, Eddy Wragg, Luke Porter, Damian Williams, Oliver Eyre and Ashley St Leger). There were a good number of PB’s which is encouraging at the start of a season and the PB of the day was by Jess Hicks who improved her 100m fly time by 3.35 sec. All swimmers performed admirably and behaved impeccably and congratulations to you all.

Thanks to all the helpers – Richard Edwards who worked very hard to organise a very successful event, Sandra O’Connor as always a brilliant team manager (we won’t mention the lane draw!), poolside helpers Hilary Marshall and Roger Kitteringham. Kathryn, Chris Wragg and Kevin Eyre who did a sterling job on recording the results (how come they get the best job again!), Mike Wragg who is making the job of starter his own, Alan Mitchell doing his usual impeccable job as time keeper, Judith Bush who did her usual fantastic job as announcer despite an equipment failure and Ruth Taylor for doing the door and raffle ably assisted by Pete Tanner and Fiona Garry. It was great to see our (sadly still injured) captain Guy Pearce there to support the team and do the important job of taking round the drinks for the officials.

The gala result was:-

BHSC 327

Southwold 299

Clevedon 289

Keynsham 271

Bristol North 167

Backwell 157

Yeovil 154

Penguins 124

This was a great warm up for our National League galas the first of which is on Saturday 9th October at Hutton Moor so put the date in your diary, keep fit and well and train hard.

Last Updated ( Wednesday, 12 October 2011 )


Angus in Channel swim record.


Written by Administrator   

Thursday, 14 October 2010

At 02.35am on 4th September 2010, after 18 months of intensive open water training at Southbourne and competing in open water races, Angus Rowley a BHSC swimmer and a team of 5 other boys from Bristol and the surrounding areas became the youngest relay team to swim the English Channel and they broke the world record held by a team of school boys since 1968. It took the team 13.5 hours to reach France with most of the swim taking place in the dark. Each boy swam an hour at a time and battled their way through fish, floating debris and tankers. They were supported by an amazing team of professionals made up of coach Penny Porter, doctors and lifeguards. One of the main aims of the challenge was to get children interested in open water swimming-Angus loves it and is planning his next swim!!  The exploits of the team are fully documented on the BEST web site <click here > but the event is best summed up in Angus’s own words written for Blue Peter.

Friday 3rd September… I was supposed to be at school.. Were we going to go or not? We were now getting desperate after a 2-week wait when the weather was bad. We woke up at about 8am on Friday 3rd September in our dormitories and waited to see if we were going to swim today. When it looked as though it was a ‘no go’ the mums cooked pasta anyway just in case and we settled down to chat and play games!

Then at about 11.30 am we got a phone call from Mike, our pilot. Sarah came rushing in and shouted, “Who wants to swim the Channel?” At last we were going. We had about 45 minutes to get ready, so everyone was rushing around getting food and bags ready. The mums were flapping and making millions of ham sandwiches. We were all given our seasickness medication by Paddy, the doctor and the mums told him he could be strict with us if he needed to be! Penny, our coach was given a list of things we needed to be reminded typical mum things like-, eat, drink, and keep warm and to wear hats. All the Best Committee, dads and brothers and sisters were told and they started to head to Dover to be here when we returned.

We then made our way down to Dover marina for a safety brief on the boat. We met Mike and we were pretty excited by then and couldn’t believe we were finally doing it. We loaded our bags on to the boat and took pictures of us sitting at the front of the boat .The inspector( who was there to make sure we complied with all the Channel swim rules) and Mike told us the safety of the boat and we said bye to our families and set off, excited. We motored to Shakespeare beach where we were to set off and Lewis our first swimmer got ready and put on his hat, goggles and Vaseline. The instructor told him to jump in and swim to the beach, when he got to the beach all our families had walked round and were waiting there. It was a beautiful day and the sea glistened. It looked as though it was going to be kind to us. Word was out that some swimmers in the Channel had dolphins swimming alongside them.  Mike pressed the siren when the instructor gave the ok and Lewis ran in and jumped into the water and started to swim. We all cheered for ages. Fifteen minutes later we waved the pink t-shirt to symbolise that Lewis had been in the water for 15 minutes. We were all pretty relaxed so we were sunbathing at the front of the boat and eating some lunch, you could still see the shore of Shakespeare beach.We all took our turn. We had to swim in a specific order otherwise our attempt would fail.

Lewis, Alex, and Danny all swam strongly.  Alex had a near miss with a yacht as it came very close to him. Alex was a bit phased but we gave him lots on encouragement. I was next and 15 minutes before Danny finished I started to get ready. I undressed into my trunks, checked my hat and goggles and put Vaseline on to stop my trunks rubbing with salt water. I cheered on Danny as I was about to get in at 4pm.The change over was really important otherwise we could be disqualified; luckily everyone else had got it right so far. I jumped in behind Danny and we both started swimming then Danny slowed and I overtook him and the boat stopped but I carried on going whilst Danny got out. I was a bit worried when I got in, as there was 10 meters of seaweed in front of me and I was worried about putting my hand through a jellyfish or something worse. I remembered what we had been told as a team during training…keep going. I continued going and I swam for my hour! While swimming I kept my mind occupied by thinking about how long it would be before the pink shirt was waved. I then had to changeover with James. All went to plan and I climbed back into the boat on the rope stairs in the middle of the boat. I got out and dressed and Paddy checked that I was ok. I ate Haribos and bread sticks for energy. He told me to get warm. I cheered on James and then had a sleep, as I knew I was going back in at 10pm when I would be tired and cold. Half way in to James’s swim a large container boat came very close to him (apparently even the mums and dads noticed this with binoculars from the shore). But James bravely carried on. Followed by Drum by this time it was getting dark. We gave Drum lots of encouragement, as it was getting dark, and whilst we had had some practice in the dark we hadn’t expected to do most of the swimming in the dark. Lewis went in and now it was properly dark so they turned on some of lights and one was really bright so it kind of blinded you, but when it got back to Drum they dimmed it. Alex put on his green glow stick so that we could see him. We all had green lights fitted to the back of our trunks and swimming hat and Danny swam like billyho.

Then at 11pm it was me again. I was tired but not really worried as I knew everyone else had done it and I was not going to let anyone down. Again I kept track of the time by guessing every 15 minutes. I watched the boat’s light rays and tried to keep swimming in them and this kept me focused. When I came out this time I fell asleep straightaway, as I was feeling a bit queasy. Luckily James was swimming with fish, which were thin and long, and they jumped over him, which he enjoyed. When I woke up Lewis was in for the third time at 2.30am. I was very excited, as I knew we were nearly there and I could see the lighthouse where we were planning to land. We cheered Lewis and sat at the front of the boat thinking that yes we were going to do this. We were all chatting now and getting really excited. Then Alex went in at 2pm. We begged Alex to swim as strongly as he could as none of us could face a third lap. Alex was 200m from the shore when the pilot told Penny she had to go for safety to make sure Alex didn’t get bashed on the rocks. Alex clambered up and managed to stand up for 3 seconds when he was knocked back into the water. But this was enough we had swum the English Channel. We went crazy we had done it- the youngest team to have swum it! None of us could believe it. We had broken the record held by the 1968 British schoolboys for 42 years to the day! Sleep overtook us all and we slept all the way back to Dover until we were woken up to sit at the front of the boat to hold the Union Jack flag as we motored into the harbour at 4.30am back to our cheering parents and supporters.

Last Updated ( Wednesday, 12 October 2011 )


National County Team Championships


Written by Administrator   

Monday, 18 October 2010

Very many congratulations to Abi Bowring and Oliver Eyre who swam for Gloucestershire in the National County Team Championships at Ponds Forge Sheffield on October 17th. They both swam in two individual events which is an honour in itself. Abi did a 3.74 second PB in the 100m breaststroke to gain a superb 2nd place. and in the 100m backstroke she was close to her personal best. Oliver did PB's in both the 100m butterfly and 100m freestyle, times which he set only recently so he is showing very good early season form. Well done both of you for these great perfomances and good luck for the coming season.

Last Updated ( Wednesday, 12 October 2011 )


Four Seasons Gala Clevedon 6th November


Written by Administrator   

Tuesday, 09 November 2010

We went to Clevedon for our last Four Seasons of this year with a rather smaller girls team than I would have liked.  With only 2 10/11 and 12 year old girls it meant that Maddy Cheesley and Molly Huckle were swimming non stop and did not complain at all.  A big thank you also goes to Rory Maxwell who in his first gala swam 6 events for me, 4 being fly and still had a big smile on his face at the end of the evening, well done Rory.

We welcomed new swimmers to our team, in the girls Grace Caple, Lauren Millard, Amelia Risk and Laura Waters and they did us proud with a 2nd and 3rd place in their relays, well done.  For the boys we welcomed Rory Maxwell, Joe Hubble and Jake Weeks and they took 1st place in both their relays, well done boys. 

We had 21 wins on the night which was outstanding seeing the number of races swimmers had to swim.  We managed 16 PB’s with PB of the night going to Jake Weeks who obtained a 5 sec PB in his 25 breast, well done Jake.

The gala was very exciting; after 10 events we were beating Burnham by 1 point, (after I had told Pat from Burnham that we would not win this one!!!!), after 20 events we were level, after 30 events we had taken the lead again by 2 points.  At 40 events we extended our lead to 9 points and after 51 events we had won by a clear 19 points with an amazing swim in the canon winning by nearly a clear length, well done team.  No wonder Pat wanted to push me in herself.

Thank you to Tina, Hilary, Roger, Louise and Curtis for helping and missing the Rugby.

Well done Team.

Provision results:-

Bristol Henleaze        197

Burnham                     178

Backwell                      148

Bishopsworth             128

Clevedon                     103

Sandra O’Connor

Team Manager 

Last Updated ( Wednesday, 12 October 2011 )


Gloucester County 2011 800m Freestyle


Written by Brian Guy   

Tuesday, 07 December 2010

The Gloucester County Championships (Blocks) 2011 started with the 800m freestyle events at Horfield on December 5th. In the 11 yrs age group Jorji Longdon swam brilliantly to record a 37.61 second PB and easily take her heat and win a thoroughly deserved gold medal. Jorji is a very determined swimmer and it certainly showed in this race. In the 13 yrs age group Abi Bowring also excelled with a 28.54 second PB to win her heat and take the gold medal. Abi's swim was right out of the top draw and was a massive 24.36 seconds ahead of the second place swimmer. Eddy Wragg was our final competitior on the day and swam  a 5.15 second PB for 5th place. So well done to all three swimmers to get us off to a good start to the 2011 Blocks. The full results are on the County website <here> .

Last Updated ( Wednesday, 12 October 2011 )


National League 2010 Final report


Written by Brian Guy   

Sunday, 12 December 2010

This year in division 1 of the Arena National League there were two finals, the top 10 teams swam in the 10 lane 50m pool in Cardiff and the bottom 8 teams swam in the 8 lane 50m pool at Millfield School, so it was Millfield for us. After the first two rounds we were in 12th position in the league behind Seagulls who were seeded in lane 4 and we were next to them in lane 5. For many of our younger swimmers it was the first time they had competed in a longer pool so it was good experience for them and Millfield is a great venue. Jane Garry and Oliver Eyre got us off to a splendid start in the 200m IM swims both doing PB’s and both gaining 2nd place. As the gala progressed it was clear that Seagulls were the team to beat and we were always close to them but never quite caught them so we finished 2nd on the day. This means that we have (provisionally) finished in 12th place exactly where we finished in the previous two years! All swimmers performed exceptionally well setting a high number of PB’s (27 out of 34 individual swims) and breaking numerous club records. The star swimmer of the evening was Abi Bowring who swam in both the 13 yrs and 15 yrs age groups and recorded four wins. Oliver Eyre was in top form and had two impressive wins in his age group. In the youngest age group there were individual wins for Sam Marshall and Charlie Waters. The climax of the league galas is always the last two events – the 6x50m open freestyle relays. In two very thrilling races both our ladies (Katie McLernon, Megan McLernon, Jane Garry, Jess Hicks, Abi Bowring and Rebecca Allen) and men (Steve Longland, Oliver Eyre, Luke Porter, Guy Pearce, Ashley St Leger, and James St Leger) stormed home in front. Sadly it was not enough to overhaul Seagulls. I would like to say a huge thank you to all team members who have supported the club in all three galas and the helpers who so ably supported you.

Last Updated ( Wednesday, 12 October 2011 )