A sad note from Wilts County ASA

It is with great sadness that we have to inform you that Marilyn died on Friday 22nd June 2018.

Marilyn, or Bo as we all knew her, joined Chippenham ASC  late in 1969 after being advised that her sons were good enough to join a swimming club. That was the start of 48 years of total commitment within the sport which benefitted thousands of children and poolside helpers.

 At Chippenham she immediately volunteered, first on the social committee and then quickly moved into poolside work, initially working under Eric Gale. She took the ASA Teacher, Advanced Teachers, becoming Head Coach 1975. In 1976, on the first ASA Club Coaches Course to run in Wiltshire, she was one of only two candidates to achieve the qualification. She went on to take and pass the  ASA Teachers for Disabled Swimming.

During her first 10 years with the club they were unbeatable in the County with swimmers up to National standard, National wins at the National Lifesaving competition  and  a Winter League  Final in 1981 where the club won all 39 events. A feat never since achieved.

School swimming came next and she spent years on the poolside at Chippenham either in a sunhat or raincoat. She was also always keen to work with Special Need Schools and was the only person who would have arranged a Diving Competition from a 1metre board for children with Downs Syndrome. They were fearless at Diving, except that they could not actually swim. ( Bo had some county swimmers in the water to take them back to the side!)

This was followed by being appointed as Master in Charge of Swimming at Marlborough College and 30 years running the swimming on their successful Summer School. She was so proud to have been a member of the Senior Common Room.

Bo trained as a Tutor for Swimming, Disabled Swimming and Coaching training an endless stream of courses and finally becoming a Senior Tutor in all three disciplines and as ASA External Verifier. Bo was an outstanding Moderator and Assessor, she had the ability to recognise good teachers within minutes of the lesson starting and was always able to give constructive comment with a smile. She also qualified as an official and for years was part of the Referees Team at County Championships.

She Team managed the County Team from 1976 – 2012; a County Selector from 1981 – 2015, she was always a popular choice as she decided to take the team somewhere on the way;  from Warwick Castle on the way to Coventry to the beach at Weymouth.  Bo was head coach for the County Squad at Pewsey on Saturday mornings for 25 years; Easter Course coach both at Wroughton and Pewsey for 26 years.  Outside the County she also team managed the ESSA Division 5 team at thre Schools Nationals and was also a Team Manager for the Western Counties.

Not content with the hours on the poolside, she also threw herself into administration. Swimming Committee, Education Committee, DPP Committee, Easter Course Committee, Executive and Secretary of Swimming Committee 2000 – 2017. For 10 years she was also a member of the ASA Judicial Tribunal.

Bo’s tremendous impact on Wiltshire swimming was recognised in 1990 when she was elected as Executive Choice as County President and in 2005 was awarded the prestigious Dolly Rice Award for services to the County.  In 2016 the County presented her with a  Special Award when she retired due to failing health.

Endless, tireless commitment but what Bo will be remembered for is her desire to make the swimming world as good as it could possibly be for the swimmers and her help, and utter loyalty to County Swimming and all her colleagues. A sad day, but Bo is to be celebrated for all she gave us.

Funeral details to be advised. 

Posted by Swim England South West on June 29th 2018

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