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Award recognises efforts of south Norfolk swimming teacher, who guides all age groups

PUBLISHED: 18:26 23 November 2013 | UPDATED: 12:34 24 November 2013

Teresa Griffin, who runs Water Lilies Swimming Schools, with some of her swimmers

Teresa Griffin, who runs Water Lilies Swimming Schools, with some of her swimmers

Archant Norfolk Photographic © 2013

A swimming school owner from Harleston has spoken of her surprise after she received a prestigious award recognising individuals who have demonstrated an outstanding contribution to swimming and water safety over the last year.

Teresa Griffin, 49, who owns and runs Water Lilies Swimming School, offering swimming lessons at pools across Norfolk and Suffolk, has received the Sir Henry Pike Memorial Award from the Swimming Teachers Association (STA).

The shield is awarded annually to a swimming teacher who has met criteria and standards set down by the STA covering commitment and continuous professional development.

Miss Griffin, who lives in Pipers Meadow, Worlingworth, started her school in 2008 when she began offering swimming lessons to her friends’ children, but the school has since grown to teach more than 950 people a week, ranging from six weeks to 80-years-old and has 19 staff.

Lessons are held at Archbishop Sancroft High School in Harleston, but also at six other pools in the area, including Redlingfield, Shelfanger, Pulham, Burgh St Peter, Flixton and Holton.

“I am thrilled and quite surprised. It is nice to be recognised for something that you feel passionate about. I love seeing the excitement on the children’s faces at lessons,” Miss Griffin said.

The mother-of-one, who has the nickname Treacle, added she did not think her award success would have been possible without the efforts of the 19 instructors who help take the lessons on six days a week.

The STA award recognised her efforts over the last 12 months, which included introducing more STA award courses and increasing the variety of lessons to include snorkelling, diving, syncro, short intense courses and taster sessions.

She received the award at Archbishop Sancroft pool on Saturday.

John Holden, the STA’s regional organiser for East Anglia, said: “Teresa’s award is richly deserved and epitomises all the hard work which goes into swimming teaching and coaching throughout Norfolk and Suffolk.”

Roger Millward, the STA’s CEO, added: “Teresa has demonstrated huge commitment to providing excellent teaching provision in Norfolk and Suffolk and has worked tirelessly to ensure that people in the area have access to the quality teaching they need.”

She lives with her partner Darrin Taylor, 49 and has a son Jake Morton, 20.

For more information about the school, visit www.waterliliesswim.co.uk.

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