Friday-Sunday 2nd-4th March, 2012

Three days of swimming competitions

With Sue at the Aquatic Centre in London, preparing to be a volunteer at the 2012 Olympics, I had to make sure that the Hampshire Primary Relays competition ran successfully at Southampton. There was a good team of people available .. my job was largely technical, making sure that there was a working PA, timing and meet management system.

The biggest challenge at Southampton is getting equipment onto poolside. Including things like medals, I had 4 trolleys of equipment, plus a roll-along computer bag. Getting to poolside involves two different lifts and lots of movement of trolleys. Happily both lifts were working. I gave myself plenty of time, and everything was working for the start of competition.

At the end of the competition, all of the stuff had to be repacked into trolleys and taken back down the lifts to the car. By the time I got home, I was aching in strange places, but overall I was fit enough to do what I needed to do.

In the evening, Chris and I attended the Basingstoke Sports Awards, where Sue, Chris and I were jointly nominated for the Service to Sport award. (Sue and I won this award in 2005, so did not expect to win it again, but is was good to be nominated).

Basingstoke Bluefins were the major winners this year.

- The club was named Club of the Year
- Bluefins Masters was named Team of the Year for the second year running
- One of our youngsters, Laura Moseley, won Young Volunteer of the Year.
- Two triathletes who do their swimming training with Bluefins, Hannah Parker and Kate Robson were named Junior and Senior Sportswomen of the Year


This weekend saw the start of my first major swimming competition of the year, the Hampshire County Championships at the Mountbatten Centre in Portsmouth. This time I had Chris to help loading equipment into the car and get it onto poolside. (For help, read doing most of the work).

The competition started at 12:30, so we had plenty of time to get all the computers and network set-up. The pool staff were very helpful.

Not everything went smoothly. I left my chain of office as Hampshire County President at home and my main computer (only just 2 months old) packed up. Luckily, I do take lots of computers with me and had time to get an old one working enough for me to check e-mails for withdrawals. The pool staff are still a little phased by timing equipment and could not locate the cable to connect the start box. It turned out that the pool no longer possess a cable and we had to borrow one from Portsmouth.

Sue was not needed at the Aquatic Centre in London, so came to Portsmouth on the train. We were very pleased to have her there, both as an announcer and in picking up lots of detail in the administration. She went back to her hotel in London, ready for a 6am start on Sunday!

Overall the competition went pretty smoothly. We were finished just after 7pm. Chris and I stayed at the Premier Inn at Port Solent and had an excellent dinner as part of their meal deal.

I was gradually getting back to normal and did a lot of walking around the pool, but by 10pm, I had lots of aches and was pretty tired.


The start on Sunday was rather earlier, so we had to back at the pool at 8am. Again, everything went very smoothly. We were finished by 4pm.

I lost track of the number of times I walked the length of the pool.

We were home before 6pm, so I made it to the St. Mary's Evening Service which included a fascinating Christian perspective on Euthanasia. That didn't finish until almost 8:30, so I was pretty tired when I picked up dinner from the KFC take-away.

Overall, the weekend left me with lots of aches and very tired, but I am sure that the exercise did me a lot of good.