President of Sussex Squids tries to reunite former members

Members of the Sussex Squids disabled swimming group, pictured in its early years. Are you in this picture?
Members of the Sussex Squids disabled swimming group, pictured in its early years. Are you in this picture?

The president of a disabled swimming group is trying to reunite past members for its 25th anniversary.

When she worked at The Angmering School, in Station Road, Angmering, Sandra Cook helped to recruit and teach the first members of the Sussex Squids in 1992.

Members of the Sussex Squids disabled swimming group, pictured in its early years. Are you in this picture?

Members of the Sussex Squids disabled swimming group, pictured in its early years. Are you in this picture?

Now the club’s president, Sandra wants to get in touch with old members and volunteers for the 25th anniversary celebrations on Saturday, September 16.

She said: “We would love to see them, and know what they are up to now. It was a very special time and they were very much a part of starting the Sussex Squids.”

The club was founded to allow disabled people to swim competitively.

Group members ranged in age from 11 to 30 and had disablities from Down syndrome and cerebal palsy to hearing and sight impairments. They trained with Sandra and other coaches, including Steve and Daphne Beltz, and competed in galas all over the country.

Members came from Angmering, Littlehampton, Lancing, Bognor, and Oak Grove College in Worthing. They trained at Christ’s Hospital School in Horsham, and later the Littlehampton Swimming and Sports Centre in Sea Road, where the anniversary celebrations will take place.

Swimmers that represented Great Britain included Simon Miller, who swam in the Beijing Paralympic Games in 2008.

Sandra said other members included Penny Clapcott, who had brittle bones; hearing impared swimmers Darren Gritton, Emma Clement and Daniel Bocking; and Simon Redman, who she believes is now a personal trainer.

Club chairman Bob Jones from Littlehampton has been involved since 2008, when his son Alfie joined. One of his fondest memories was last year, where swimmers appeared on a float for the bonfire celebrations.

If you are pictured above or know someone who is, please email or call the paper.