20 Jan 2020

2019 was, by all accounts and comparisons, a pretty stand out year for Nottingham Leander SC.

Huge successes in all disciplines from our Water Polo squads and players, our Tadpoles, our age group swimmers and our Masters too alongside the development of a new era for the club that build heavily on the strong foundations laid out over the many previous years.

It was beyond fitting then that we descended upon the Sir Julien Cahn Pavilion in West Bridgford on Saturday 4th January to welcome in the New Year together and celebrate 2019 in style.

Huge thanks at the outset must go to Aileen Francis and her team for organising this year’s event.

Aileen is a great lady of ideas and action and so when she approached NLSC’s committee with a plan to try something new it would have been folly not to agree. On behalf of everyone from the Green Octopus it’s safe to say she delivered and then some. It was the perfect way to round off our year.

Her work to source raffle prizes from business across the county we’re also greatly received. Our thanks, in particular order, must go to:

Lost City Golf @ Corner House, Nottingham – golf, crazy, inside, awesome.
Dive Master @ Aspley, Nottingham (Scuba experience for any person 8 yrs. plus)
David Lloyd Health Club @ Aspley Lane.
AMF Bowling @ Belward street, Nottingham
Mansfield Palace Theatre

To our friends at Speedo UK. The signed TeamSpeedo photo should be taking pride of place on Eli Moodley’s wall!

And finally to Sean @ Hogan’s Magical Mirror whose photos are the current joy (and future bane – your parents will be digging them out when you’re older) of everyone who took part. This was such a success that Sean will be back next year too and is offering NLSC members a discount on any bookings made with him this year. (Sean contact details are at the bottom.)

2020 has a lot to live up to. Think we can do that!

The full list of annual winners from the night are below:

1. Master Trophy Winners

The Pat Slaney awards go to the most improved male and female Masters swimmers as judged by our Masters Coach, Alex Thurston:

Female: Leona Hinds

Leona has had a good year in the pool. The year started well when she won all 11 events at CABSC! Leona always puts her name forward to swim in relays at the targeted meets, and, this year, has swam some PBs (and found a love of distance events!)

Male: Rob Steel

Rob has swum in most competitions and has had a successful year in open water competitions – mainly podium finishes, including some national titles!

Rob also puts a smile on people’s faces at training, mostly with the jokes he tells (it’s the way he tells them, which means I don’t know if they’re laughing with or at you!) and his infamous MNRN side-swing dive is always a crowd pleaser!

2. The Davis Trophies

Bill Davis is President of the club and a past Chief Coach. The family are also probably the longest serving members of the club. These awards are for the junior members (12/U) of the Club who in the opinion of the Coaches and Committee have made a significant contribution in all aspects of their early swimming.

Female: Sophia Fidler

Sophia has matured from a talented (timid; at times) swimmer into a powerful swimmer and leader within the squad. Despite swimming for two different clubs her commitment to Leander never seems to waver. She goes out of her way to represent Leander and of course is fantastic person to have within any team.

Male: Daniel Oyaide Nichols

Daniel was one of a group of swimmers to come up through our ranks to become one of the strongest swimmers we have at galas and during training sessions. He is the type of person I want the younger swimmers to emulate and aspire to be like, he listens, takes ideas on board and is always a please to coach.

3. Jonathon Preston Trophies

Jonathon was a swimmer with the club who died tragically at an early age in a road accident. The trophies awarded in his honour are for the swimmers that achieve the largest overall time improvement between the first and last of Junior Gala’s

Female: Alexandra Tomlinson
Male: Luke Marsden

4. David Ladds Trophy

Dave was a committee member, Team Manager and parent who tragically passed away. The award in his honour is made by the committee and given for significant contribution on the administrative side of the club.

Chris Syrett is the 2019 recipient of the Dave Ladds Trophy for all the work he’s done on NLSC’s SwimMark accreditation over the last few years and making sure we’re compliant with all our responsibilities – no mean task whatsoever!

5. Whiting Plate

The Whiting Plate is awarded to NLSC’s personality of the year as voted for by the committee.

Jon Hewing is the 2019 winner of the Whiting Plate. His contribution to NLSC’s communications and social media activities has been outstanding. He has a great way with the swimmers and is always encouraging and getting all the swimmers involved and motivated. Long may it continue!

His work with the United Nations is underestimated, taught Lionel Messi how to play football and is credited by Sir David Attenborough for being his lifelong inspiration. He also takes immense liberties at times when writing the news reports for NLSC’s website.

6. Swimmer’s Swimmer of the Year

This award is made in recognition of Phil Davis’ fifty-plus years with the Nottingham Leander, our second
longest serving member. This trophy is voted on by NLSC’s swimmers and reflects the esteem and respect the winner has amongst their compatriots.

Henry Pawson was voted as the 2019 winner of the Phil Davis award.

7. Swimmer’s Coach of the Year Award

This award is also voted for by our swimmers to reflect their thanks and gratitude to our team of coaching staff and volunteers.

NLSC’s 2019 Coach of the Year is Jonny Higham.

Jonny’s award reflects the commitment and confidence he gave to the swimmers (e.g. texting parents during open meets when he wasn’t in attendance) as well as being a relatable leader with recent experiences for them to look up to. Jonny remains an active, critical part of club even though he’s stood down from coaching and our past and future success will be in a large part down to him.

8. Tony Holmes Trophy

Tony was our Chief Coach for 32 years who tragically passed away at the age of 58. The award made in his honour is made by the committee for a swimmer that hasn't necessarily won things or been the best but has gave their all, in training, galas and as part of the team.

Henry Pawson is the 2019 winner of the Tony Homes Trophy.

Henry has swum for Leander for a good number of years and many have had the pleasure of coaching him during this time.

He is growing into a great young man and is helpful and friendly. He showed great leadership skills at the residential swim camp at Denstone College and sometimes you could forget he was a swimmer & not a coach.

Henry helps on Monday at Rushcliffe and the coaches and swimmers love him! Not only can he show them what to do, he can also explain and help others to improve.

It’s great to have a swimmer like Henry around you know he will give his all in racing or training and he is be a pleasure to be around.

9. Victor Ludorum Trophies

These are awarded to the male and female swimmers with the highest total of FINA points across 50,100, 200 Freestyle and IM events at the Club Championships

Female: Jessica Li 2788 points

Male: Andrew Hall 2648 points

10. Bill Wilde Trophies

Bill was a past Chairman of the Club his daughter Isobelle swam for the Club in the 70’s. The trophies awarded in his honour are made by our Director of Swimming.

Female: Gisele De Pont

Gisele joined us at the beginning of the year and despite not really speaking any English she has really adapted well and is a brilliant member of our club. She trains and represents the club all to a very high standard.

Her English is improving but not as fast as her swimming! If she keeps up both NLSC is sure she will progress to become a truly great swimmer and person.

Male: Ryan Banks

It’s been a tough year for Ryan after breaking his collarbone at the beginning of the year and had to have surgery that involved cutting the muscles.

This made his recover a very slow process, but Ryan persevered through and re-joined training as soon as he was able to do so, initially only doing kick work at first then a little single arm.

It wasn’t until September that he could finally race again but has been going from strength to strength setting PB’s almost straight away. The perseverance and determination shown is testament to his great character and totally deserving of this award.


Sean @ Hogan’s Magical Mirror
Photo booth hire - 07842 583246

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