Edward McCutheon, Lifesaving Instructor at BDAC Redfins, is today’s guest blogger. Last week he and BDAC club members headed to the London Host Boroughs’ Multi Aquatics Event 2014 which was held at the London Aquatics Centre.

With great excitement, I left work a little early last Thursday, and travelled to Stratford for the London Aquatics Centre, which most will know as the London 2012 Olympic Pool! As a Lifesaving Instructor at BDAC Redfins, a Lifesaving and Swimming Club in East London, I was privileged to join six BDAC swimmers and four of my new Lifesaving Sport squad for an evening at the London Host Boroughs’ Multi Aquatics Event 2014.

I never made it to the Olympics, or even on to the park, so enjoyed walking up to the centre (who knew there could be so much open space in East London?!) and visiting the facility. The operators were still sorting out the final touches (notice boards, etc.) but both 50m pools were in pristine condition. Lighting, as you’d expect, in the main pool was fantastic. I’ve been told by a number of others, who did visit during the Olympics, that it is bizarre seeing all the seating removed!

Anyway, my swimmers and lifesavers competed in six events – individual relays, a team squadron, some synchronised swimming, water polo, diving and an inflatable course. All three of our diving candidates (who’d never dived from boards before the evening) were bold and took their last scored dive from the 5m platform! The buzz amongst the group was brilliant and has inspired more support from our parents, who were also excited to be visiting the facility. The coaches and parents even got a behind-the-scenes tour, including to the new Performance Diving room, where Tom Daley practices dives from spring boards into a pit of foam!

This was apparently the first competitive swimming event since the London 2012 games closed and it was great to be there, even if I wasn’t allowed in the pool itself as I wasn’t a competitor! We hope to be returning more regularly – as a ‘host borough’ we have priority bookings on the pool for our aquatics club, and for competitions there. Who knows, we’ve got provisional bookings for BDAC Redfins and, if our financial plan gets approved, we might be the first Lifesaving Club at the Olympic swimming pool, now wouldn’t that be cool…!

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