British Swim School Brings Much-Needed Services to Roanoke Valley
By Jill BakerBritish Swim School, the North American leader in “learn to swim” franchises, is moving forward with expansion by opening its first location in the Roanoke Valley. A second location aims to open in early January. New franchise owner Alice Ann Clark heads up the operations in the Roanoke Valley. The mother of two has an extensive background in working with children, with years of experience as a teacher and an education consultant. The Roanoke native is also an avid swimmer. When she was searching for a new career opportunity, Clark says she was thrilled to be able to blend her passion for teaching and swimming to offer critical life skills to her community.
December 13, 2022
December 13, 2022
“I knew I wanted to bring something that Roanoke needed,” Clark acknowledged. “I could tell right from the get-go that British Swim School’s curriculum and their programming was stellar. By combining that with my background in teaching and providing support for my instructors, I knew the move was going to be seamless.”For more than 40 years, British Swim School has been dedicated to teaching water survival skills by teaching infants, children, and adults of all ages the skills needed for water acclimation, water survival, and stroke development. Its mission — ensure that every person, regardless of age or ability, has the opportunity to become a happy and safer swimmer. Across the nation, eleven people die every day from unintentional drownings, with nearly 4,000 deaths occurring each year. Research shows that participation in formal swim programs, such as those offered by British Swim School, can reduce the risk of drowning by 88% among children who are most at risk for deaths caused by drowning. However, the risk of drowning isn’t limited to children: a Red Cross survey found that more than half of all Americans (54%) either can’t swim or don’t have the basic swimming skills needed to save themselves in the event of a water emergency. As a homegrown business owner in the Roanoke Valley, Clark recognized that they are surrounded by lakes and bodies of water. She sees only the need for both child and adult swim lessons and is optimistic that she can serve as a beacon for her community.
“We’re eager to offer swim lessons, but we’re also enthusiastic to be water safety experts and resources for the entire local community,” Clark said. “Whether it’s in-school programming, water safety presentations, parent support, etc., the opportunities are numerous” “Alice Ann’s passion for education and her love for her community was apparent when we met her,” expressed British Swim School President Ashley Gundlach. “Not only did she see a need for swim lessons in the Roanoke Valley with her own children, but her background in education is a huge benefit. We’re looking forward to helping her grow and seeing how she makes a difference in Roanoke.”For more information about British Swim School of Roanoke Valley, visit https://britishswimschool.com/roanoke-valley/.