2 July 2023 – Introduction to outdoor swimming: have a go, learn how to be safe and have fun (youth groups with their leaders), at Lynford, authorised by Forestry England. Contact me.
The sessions are designed for youth groups with their leaders, to give an opportunity to come and try swimming in a safe, fun and friendly session with lifeguards, and to learn more about doing it safely.
We do an interactive safety discussion before getting in the water, conducted by volunteers and lifeguards, and give some safety info in advance and afterwards, with key info on this webpage, https://www.imogensriverswims.co.uk/blog/issues/swim-play-in-water-safely-q-a/. We also have some children’s activity sheets, downloadable from the same page.
At the beach to the right on the ‘Public Lake’, Lynford Water, Lynford Road, Mundford, Norfolk, near IP26 5HW. Swim entry point and reception point: what3words lifeguard.youths.button; Lat,Long 52.51944289673059,0.6856480687610107; Nat Grid TL823946; Event authorised by Forestry England. Car parking in the car park opposite Lynford Arboretum, walk to swim event area approximately 10 minutes.
Parking might be limited, especially if it is a warm day, so please consider cycling or public transport, or car share, arranged to be dropped off or organise transport if possible, and allow extra time.
This info and lots more (including on safety) is in the Essential info document we send to participants – download (Word.doc 4 pages) https://www.imogensriverswims.co.uk/blog/wp-content/uploads/2023/05/Essential-info-for-PARTICIPANTS-youth-groups-swim-intro-020723.doc
More documents below.
Times of sessions
We split the day up into sessions, and currently those available to groups start at: 11.15 (some places, subject to confirmation) or 13.15 (spaces available), and we might add further sessions, depending on how many groups sign up. The whole session including changing is 90 minutes. Your group would all be together in the same session, subject to numbers.
Role of adults
When we have held family events, there have been great benefits from having the parent in the water with the child, and that principle will still be true for group leaders. The project aims to pass on information about keeping safe at the same time as having fun. We hope to reach children, young people, parents and adults, and involving everyone together can be very enjoyable as well as effective.
Generally, lifeguards will be responsible for the safety of participants, however the group leader/adult bringing young people and children has some responsibilities, and sometimes this involves being in the water.
Numbers in group, ages, ratio with leaders/adults
Groups attending as an official activity/outing will have ratio numbers from their own organising body, generally to ensure they are covered within their insurance and other policies.
In addition, lifeguarding policies require ratios of numbers, ages and swimming ability and levels of supervision from adults accompanying children or young people.
We can accommodate all ages at the group swim intro, as long as these are followed. We can be flexible – get in touch to discuss.
Children aged 7 and below must be accompanied by an adult, no more than two children for one adult, and if the child/children cannot swim the adult must stay within their depth and within arms length of the children.
Children aged 8-12 who can swim must be accompanied by adults (in ratios set by their organisation), but the adults do not need to be in the water. Children of that age that cannot swim must be accompanied as for the younger children.
Young people 13 -17 do not need to be accompanied by adults (though they do need permission from their parent/carer) – but as this is an event for young people with group leaders they would be.
Swimming ability outdoors
If you’re not familiar with outdoor swimming you might not realise that it is slightly different. Someone who can swim in an indoor swimming pool in warm water will find it different outdoors – cooler, more tiring, unfamiliar. Strong swimmers as well as less strong swimmers notice a big difference.
It is safest to stay within your depth and near the shore in most circumstances, including in this event, especially if not sure and unfamiliar with open water. But if you can swim this is a chance to try going out a little deeper.
The beach at Lynford is ideal as there is quite a large shallow and gradually sloping area, so plenty of room to have fun, get familiar with outdoor water and stay safe.
Paperwork and procedures
The project will be asking group leaders to gather details for participants, some of which they can hold and some of which the lifeguards and organiser will need.
Application form for completion – download (Word.docx 2 pages) https://www.imogensriverswims.co.uk/blog/wp-content/uploads/2023/05/Application-youth-groups-swim-intro-session-2-July-2023-rev-010523.docx
We can also discuss anything that needs clarifying or flexibilities.
Conditions to participate – download (Word.doc 2 pages) https://www.imogensriverswims.co.uk/blog/wp-content/uploads/2023/05/Conditions-to-participate-youth-groups-swim-intro-020723-1.doc
Safeguarding policy – download (Word.doc 2 pages) https://www.imogensriverswims.co.uk/blog/wp-content/uploads/2023/02/Safeguarding Policy youth groups swim intro 020723.doc
Risk assessment – download (Word.docx 5 pages) https://www.imogensriverswims.co.uk/blog/wp-content/uploads/2023/05/Risk-assessment-for-swim-intro-Lynford.docx
Safety plan – download (Word.docx 5 pages) https://www.imogensriverswims.co.uk/blog/wp-content/uploads/2023/05/Safety-Plan-for-swim-intro-Lynford.docx
There will be an update nearer the time of the event with any changes or specific issues from a site assessment.
We have public liability insurance (from Suffolk County Council), document available if required.
Lottery funded project
The event is run as part of the Healing Waters project, which in turn is part of The Brecks Fen Edge & Rivers Landscape Partnership Scheme (BFER), supported by the National Lottery Heritage Fund. See Summary of the Healing Waters project.
For other events in the project, see this page, Outdoor swimming practical project dates and previous events, and you can see reports on previous events here, which might give a flavour of how they have been run with individuals and family groups.