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“It’s about trying to develop new courses for divers in the West Midlands” – Ex-Olympian Sarah Barrow on exciting new diving development project

The ex-Team GB Olympian diver is teaming up with Swim England in an attempt to raise interest in the sport by improving diving facilities at pools in the West Midlands and surrounding areas.

Barrow competed in several LEN European Aquatics Championships and Commonwealth Games, including winning gold in in Eindhoven 2012 and Berlin 2014 as well as silver in Rostock 2013. Alongside this, she also competed in the Olympics for Team GB, both in London 2012 and Rio 2016, as well as also winning silver in Commonwealth Games in Glasgow 2014.

Speaking in an exclusive interview with the University of Gloucestershire, Barrow revealed that her drive to fuel the project came from a desire to inspire more young people to take up the sport saying “As my role (Diving Development Officer) it’s about trying to develop new courses for divers in the West Midlands and surrounding areas”.

She explained how there are currently five pools with adequate diving facilities within the West Midlands, including at With five pools in the region currently having diving facilities including at Solihull, Tudor Grange, Sutton Coldfield, Windley and Walsall; the project is even looking to extend further, with two additional sites being developed at Ludlow and Shrewsbury.

Barrow at the 2012 Olympics

The scheme is also looking to broaden it’s impact, developing sites at both Ludlow and Shrewsbury in the surrounding areas, alongside the five facilities located within the catchment area.

Barrow also spoke of the diverse nature of the games, explaining how the introduction of other sports such as women’s cricket to the event, has had a huge impact on the commonwealth games saying, “the introduction of women’s cricket to Birmingham shows how diverse we can be and the more coverage we can get the better”.

Watch the full interview here

The project is one of several taking place up and down the country in the run-up to the Commonwealth games in Birmingham which are set to take place from 28th July to 5th August next summer.

On a day where fellow Brit diver, Tom Daley, has been nominated for the Sports Personality of the Year shortlist, diving looks set to take centre stage once again next year and Barrow is hopeful that schemes such as these will help to draw more coverage towards the sport and the Commonwealth games as a whole.

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