Leeds, Leeds Star
Joining youngsters taking part in the new diving programme at Pudsey Leisure Centre was: (L-R-) Back - Councillor Kevin Ritchie (Leeds City Council’s lead member for sport), front - Ben Sambrook (coach, City of Leeds), Yona Knight-Wisdom (City of Leeds diver and two-time Olympian, representing Jamaica), Chris Mears (City of Leeds diver and Team GB, Olympic gold medallist) and Jack Laugher (City of Leeds diver and Team GB, Olympic gold and silver medallist.)
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Rio Olympic heroes make a big splash as diving takes centre stage at Pudsey Leisure Centre

Three Rio Olympic heroes were the special guests as a west Leeds leisure centre launched its exciting new diving lessons programme this month.

On hand to pass on a range of expert advice and tips to youngsters as they took part in introductory taster diving classes at Pudsey Leisure Centre, were 3m synchronised springboard gold medallists Chris Mears and Jack Laugher, who also claimed a silver in the men’s individual 3m springboard final, and Yona Knight-Wisdom. Yona is also a member of the City of Leeds Diving Club with Chris and Jack and has represented Jamaica at two Olympic Games.

Also present to offer specialist guidance was head coach of the City of Leeds Diving team based at the John Charles Centre for Sport, Ady Hinchliffe, who has played a pivotal role in the development of so many world class divers. As part of the initiative, young people will have the chance to be trained by coaches from the John Charles Centre for Sport, which through its success has put Leeds well and truly on the global diving map.

As part of the programme on offer, young people can experience the delights of diving in one of three groups depending on their ability and experience. Anyone wishing to take part must be able to swim at least 50m on their front comfortably. Those participating can choose from one of three sessions held on a Saturday morning at 8.30am, 9.05am or 9.40am over 46 weeks of the year, with scheduled breaks over school holidays. Costs for the course are: full price -£22.62, Leeds Card Price – £20.70 and Leeds Card Extra Price-£15.72.

To find out more or to sign up for any of the classes, please contact: Pudsey Leisure Centre on 0113 336 7686. Sign-up will be undertaken on a first come, first served basis, and with interest set to be high, people are asked to book as soon as possible to avoid disappointment.

Councillor James Lewis, Leeds City Council’s executive member with responsibility for sport said:

“It was fantastic to welcome three of our amazing City of Leeds Olympic divers Jack, Chris and Yona to Pudsey Leisure Centre as we launched our programme of diving classes for young people.

“On hand to take the lessons and pass on their expertise will be coaches based at our very John Charles Centre for Sport, which is also home for our very successful and world renowned City of Leeds Diving team.

“With sessions available throughout the year and different classes catering for ability and experience, this is a fantastic opportunity for youngsters to discover the fun and excitement of diving and also develop their skills.”

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