2019 Q3 Saturday Training Sessions

The following Saturday training sessions have been confirmed for this quarter:

  • 13th July: 11.00am-12.30pm @ London Aquatics Centre

  • 20th July: 11.00am-12.30pm @ London Aquatics Centre

  • 27th July: 10.30am-12.00pm @ Crystal Palace National Sports Centre

  • 3rd August: 11.00am-12.30pm @ London Aquatics Centre

  • 10th August: 10.30am-12.00pm @ Crystal Palace National Sports Centre

  • 17th August: 11.00am-12.30pm @ London Aquatics Centre

  • 24th August: 10.30am-12.00pm @ Crystal Palace National Sports Centre

  • 31st August: 11.00am-12.30pm @ London Aquatics Centre

Testing the water in Swansea

For the first weekend of March, 7 Otters made the long journey out to the Welsh National Pool in Swansea, the venue for this year’s British Masters Championships in June, to compete in the Swim Wales Open Masters 2019. After a grey and rainy, but very successful, 2 days, the small team brought a total of 20 medals back to London.

Fraser, Wade, Pip, Chris & Catherine

Fraser, Wade, Pip, Chris & Catherine

Wade Rimbach took home 2 gold medals for both his 50m & 100m butterfly, as did Simon Williams for his 50m freestyle. Chris Morgan almost had a clean sweep, taking home 5 gold medals out of 6, as well as a silver in the 100m breaststroke.

Catherine Demont single-handedly represented Otter’s female side in her first meet since undergoing knee surgery last summer, taking home a bronze medal in the 100m freestyle & a gold medal in the 100m butterfly, and Caspar Stops achieved 3 medal winning places in his 4 races, in the 200m individual medley, 50m butterfly & the 50m freestyle. Lastly, Pip Bennett won first place for the 1500m freestyle, the result of which contributed to the British Championships titles this year.

A strong start to the season, and we look forward to being back in June!

Swim England and Otter celebrate 150 years

2019 is a year of celebration for both Otter Swimming Club and Swim England as they mark their 150th anniversaries.  One of the highlights of the year will be a unique team gala event at the London Aquatic Centre on Sunday 14 July which provides an opportunity for Masters swimmers all over the country to participate in these celebrations.

Otter has secured sole use of the main Olympic competition pool in London for a fun, informal gala which will include relay and individual swimming races. The teams will comprise many different Masters clubs including some of our traditional rivals (and friends!) such as Spencer, Barnet and Teddington.  It is a fantastic opportunity not only to race in the Olympic pool but to join in the fun and celebrate the camaraderie and longevity of masters swimming. Otter is putting together a programme to include a mixture of current and historic events which we hope will feature the plunge as well as some old English backstroke and novelty relays. 

Swim England is coordinating an “All Stars Team North” and “ All Stars Team South” so that masters swimmers from across the country can join us.  If you would like to be involved please contact:

Team South: Simon Veale (simon.veale@outlook.com)

Team North: Verity Dobbie and Nicola Latty (otter150.teamnorth@gmail.com

Any past and present Otter swimmers who would like to be involved should email us at otter150gala@gmail.com. Please save the date now!  

2019 represents a significant milestone for Otter and we would be delighted if you would celebrate with us by supporting this special event. 


Where: London Aquatics Centre, Olympic Park, London E20 2ZQ

When: Sunday 14 July 2019.  Warm-up at 10am with racing scheduled to finish at 2pm at the latest, with socialising to follow!

Over a thousand years of membership...

A gathering of “Mature” (i.e. older) Otters, and guests took place on February 1st for their annual post-Christmas dinner. For this sesquicentennial year it was upgraded to a black tie event at the Lansdowne Club, Mayfair.

A total of well over a thousand years of membership was present, and it was attended by all four Past Presidents and the widow of Past President and Club doyen Bob Burn; also Dennis Warnford-Davis - at age 90, the longest serving Club member (joined in 1946).

The main guest (Kelvin Juba, former Otter coach and swimming luminary) was stuck in deep snow in Somerset, but this did not inhibit a convivial evening in traditional Otter-style.


Here's to 150 years!

On Friday 11th January, it was great to see around 50 Otters from swimming and water polo congregate at the Reliance Pub to mark the beginning of the 150th anniversary celebrations. We thanked James Stewart and Cat Hasnain for their work on producing the 150th anniversary “History of Otter report”, which had been posted to all members earlier in the week. We heard from our current and recent ex-Presidents (Paul Hindle, John Iliffe, James Stewart and Charles Doxat) as they shared some of their highlights and reflections from their time with the club.

150th 1.jpg

Gina Hobson shared some of the plans for 2019, including: 

  • Very shortly, we’ll be launching a range of anniversary kit for members to buy, featuring t-shirts, sweatshirts, costumes and more. Detail to follow very soon.

  • On Saturday 1st June we'll be holding a gala dinner at the RAC Club and it’ll be THE social event of the year, when current and previous members will come together to celebrate the Club on a massive scale. Tickets will be available in March and you’ll need to make sure you sign up quickly.

  • On Sunday 14th July, Otter will be commandeering the Olympic Pool - London Aquatics Centre - for the day and we’ll be hosting an invitational swimming gala and polo matches. We’re in the process of finalising the format of the day, but make sure it’s in your diaries. It’s going to be a great day for all elements of the club to come together

  • This is along with all the regular club events we’ll be holding over the year: the open water events, handicaps and club champs, golf, monthly socials and the list goes on.

150th 2.jpg

We reflected on how the success of Otter is built on an army of volunteers behind the scenes offering their time and expertise - thanks were shared. And on this occasion to Mike Reys, Hayley Davies and Tracey Allen, who'd made the launch event happen! All in all a very pleasant, and merry evening!