In the swim at Wharf Green
5:00am Monday 4th August 2014 in By Elizabeth Mackley
CHILDREN swarmed around Wharf Green to make the most of the swimming demonstrations on offer as part of the town centre’s nod to the Commonwealth Games.
All week, visitors to the square under the Big Screen have been able to take part in a number of activities organised by inSwindon to mark the course of this year’s games.
They have also been able to enjoy a screening of the various events at the Glasgow Games on the Big Screen, including the opening ceremony that was on July 23.
On Saturday the final event, held from 11am to 2pm, was swimming with the Swindon Dolphins, who organised an interactive session with the children to learn more about the sport.
Anthony Clark, a coach at Swindon Dolphins, said: “It went really well and everything went according to plan.
“Around a dozen children came along to find out more about the sport and have a go.
“I put a lot of thought into how we were going to demonstrate swimming considering the lack of a pool in Wharf Green, and knew it was going to be quite difficult.
“I built a miniature Olympic, six-lane swimming pool – all to scale – complete with the lane markings, guide ropes, backstroke flags, starter blocks, everything.
“Then I had four wind up swimmers to use in the pool and the children could have races against each other.
“It was just a way they could find out more about the structure of the pool, and find out why there are backstroke flags where they are and what the lane markings mean.
“Shortly before the session was supposed to start it began to rain and I was concerned the event would have to be cancelled. But it soon brightened up again and we had a lot of interest.”
There have been many different sports showcased by organisations throughout the sporting scene in the town during the week, including a golf showcase put on by Broome Manor Golf Club and athletics from the Swindon Harriers.
There was a Roller Derby on July 25 with the Swindon and Wiltshire Roller Derby, and basketball and wheelchair basketball with the Swindon Shock Teams.
They have also had a chance to learn more about rugby, hockey, football, netball, boxing, street games and multisports with the Highworth Phoenix Diving Club.
There was even a chance to find out more information about some less well-subscribed sports, such as American football with Swindon Storm and fencing with the Swindon Fencing Club.
Organiser Kirsty Heber-Smith said: “It was a great opportunity to get the message out there about how important doing sports and having a healthy lifestyle is.
“It’s also the perfect opportunity to get that community feel and for people to come and do something different.”