Mid Summer Madness

Water Polo

The junior sessions are going from strength to strength and we are regularly getting number in the high 20s. Ages ranging from 7 upwards and it is great to see so many girls. We are working from a pool of 4 coaches and all of us are getting used to the noise!!!

We attended a match at Warrington the other weekend and played both U12 & U14 matches. The U12s did very well against a more experienced and at times physical opposition, and if it were not for us wanting to get all players a good length of time in the water would probably have won the game, as it was we lost the match by one. But that is not really the point, the aim is to develop the young players, give them all water time and ensure that they enjoy playing the sport.

We had 2 extra players for the U14s whereas Warrington had a complete new squad – we battled on bravely, scored a few goals, but the previous four quarters and added experience of the opposition showed. In the end Warrington ran out easy winners, but again our team showed great spirit, fight and attitude and learnt a lot.

Next up this coming Sunday we are hosting a tournament at the pool and this will be first time our fantastic new goals will be used in anger. We were fortunate enough to bid for and win funding from the Making a Difference Locally fund form Nisa foods. This has been administered via Lodeys on Paris Avenue, and we are extremely grateful to Brian and Michelle for the support. We will be getting a piece in the local paper after the tournament, with match reports and to also thank our sponsors.


Open Water

You will have seen the Derwent Water report earlier this month and next weekend we have a contingent heading off to Ullswater. This event is quite possibly our favourite event and all swimmers are this time taking part in the 3.8k. Look out for the event report the following week.


We cannot let two marriages go unnoticed either!!

You may well have noticed that Howard has looked rather stressed and a fair bit poorer this year and that is because Annie got married over the Spring Bank weekend to James. True to form H even managed to get polo and the club into his father of the bride speech – a true club man!!!

Also Harry has managed to slip away quietly in his own style and last weekend married Amy. Again many congratulations from all at the club.


True to form it is Ed who is taking the plaudits and congratulations for his efforts in triathlon. We all know that he works incredibly hard on his training and he is a true example of hard work paying off. In the last month he has won his age group in the Nantwich Sprint and came second in age group in the Gauntlet Half Ironman at Cholmondely Castle this last weekend. I can vouch for his speed as he went past me at the start of his half marathon like I was standing still. Spencer & I also entered this event and if you have not already seen my thesis on this click here to see it….


Third Place had gone home!!!

Margs Fundraising

Good old Marg is at it again and this time she is tackling the Manchester 10k Race for Life on 17th July. This will be her first ever 10k event and she is seeking sponsorship for this and rightfully so! See her at the pool or leave it with the lifeguard if you feel you can support her in this event.


Derwent Open Water

Last Sunday 5th June, saw the first of the open water events of the summer with a 5 strong contingent from the club hitting Costa del Keswick for the Epic Events Derwent water swim.

Family Cartwright were the advanced party heading up on Wednesday and as the weather was so good we had a couple of wild swims in Bassenthwaite and Buttermere. Fantastic, clear, warmish water and a great way to cool down on a hot day. That was until Christina saw a fish, I don’t think I have ever seen her move so fast, apparently it was huge!!!

Race day dawned, bright and warm, I was swimming in the 3.8 kilometre swim that has a 10 am start, so it was an early departure from the caravan to park up and register. Having cut off our arm and leg to pay for the parking it was down to the beach for the start. This is probably the first time I have been in the starting pen without another Parogon member to talk to, apparently cars are more appealing to Andy than me in a wetsuit!!

Derwent is unique amongst the swims as it is the only one where you cannot see the full course from the start, and it is surprising how being able to visualise the course really helps you stay on course and hit each buoy. It is also the longest loop of the events with long reaches between turn points, meaning it is easy to drift offline, one chap I was talking to clicked 4.3k on his Garmin. Initially I was disappointed with my time of 1 hour and 5 minutes, but this was my best ever place, 28th out of 255 starters and 4th in my age group.

Next up it was the girls, Christina, Fiona, Karen & Gemma, all of them were competing in the mile. For those of you who have competed in open water you will know how hard it is to stay alongside someone, now that is what Karen and Gemma achieved, was that motherly instinct??? Fiona was first out of the water in a fantastic time of 29.05 and coming 55th out of 257 starters. Karen and Gemma did a 32 and Christina came in in a 36. All great times and something to be proud of.


Ullswater is in July and the 3.8k for most. There will be a bigger contingent from the club at this event and lets hope for another weekend like the one we just had.

Easter Eggs, Polo & a Suprise

So thorntons-personalised-easter-eggsyou will probably over indulge this weekend on eggs, so what better time to get down to the pool and work off those extra calories.

The open water season is almost upon us and many of us will be taking part in events across the country.

Water Polo – Fixture @ Wellington

The younger team drew 9 – 9. We may well have won it if we hadn’t decided to give them a 4 goal lead before we started to play!

The U15 lost 11 – 2. In fairness, we were always going to be up against it as a number of their players were almost certainly a lot older than 15. It was also the first competitive match for Ed, Morgan and Alyssa, who unlike the rest of the team, didn’t have the advantage of experiencing playing against another team. It can be quite daunting the first time you play against players you don’t know. They acquitted themselves brilliantly.

Also well done to those player who due to lack of numbers had to play 2 full games without a rest. Hopefully we will have a few more substitutes next time.

Although there were a number of excellent performances, I’ve got to give a special mention to Zac. I thought he was outstanding in both games. Especially in the U15 game when he was being bombarded by some extremely hard shots, he managed to save countless efforts and keep the score respectable.

To a certain extent the score lines were irrelevant. The most pleasing thing from our point of view is that we are getting better with every game. We are becoming more competitive and if we continue to improve, the results will follow.

Training as usual this week, we are then having a week off and will resume on 7th April.

The water polo have also secured £1000 worth of sponsorship for new equipment and I will post about that soon.

Lawrence’s Eye

Saturday morning regulars will know Lawrence well, often seen sitting waiting for Debbie to finish her swim. Now what you may not know is that he has been out of the water a while as he has received a cornea transplant in his right eye. The sad part of this is that he has had to wait over 18 months to get a donor, so if you can and feel able sign yourself up to be  donor so that you can help people like Lawrence in the future.


Robinson Crusoe?


No – its Addison who is presently on one of these student travel things – apparently its the thing to do!!!

But he has gone one step further and gone and popped the questions to Rachel on a far flung deserted beach. Just what you want to see sitting at your desk in deepest Uttoxetet!!!

Many, many congratulations to you both from all at the club, and here is to many a happy year together…..


Parogon on Strava

We are now on Strava, the tracking app of choice for cyclists and runners the world over!!

Join our club and see how others are doing, what training, rides, runs they have done.

At the moment there is just me!!!

Search Parogon on strava!


Junior Water Polo

Water Polo, what’s that I hear you cry, don’t the horses drown?

We have heard it all before, but water polo is one of those sports that gets misunderstood, that is until it has been seen and or tried – then opinions change.

We have a rich history here at Parogon, international players, international coaches, 8th best team in the country – all from a little pool in Newcastle.

So when the senior team folded a few years ago, you would have thought, well that is that, but far from it from the ashes has risen the junior set-up. We regularly have 20 children of both sexes, aged 7 up enjoying training, learning a fast, exciting team sport. Matches are being played and the kids are learning about being in a group, working for each other and the importance of teamwork.

More to come as we develop, but do you fancy a go at this? Then give us a shout by using the contact form or via Facebook – come down and give it a go you will be surprised!


Keith Lovewell

It is with great sadness that we bring you the news that our one time long serving Secretary, Keith Lovewell passed away on 28th January aged 82.

Despite very rarely, possibly never, entering the water, Keith was a long time stalwart of the club with many years service to his name. He will be remembered as the secretary who livened up many a committee meeting by either; making the minutes of the last meeting up the night before the next meeting, constantly getting peoples names wrong and giving everyone a great laugh whilst at all times having the club and its members in his heart.

As child protection and litigation came to the fore his favoured line during meetings was’

“Its always the secretary who goes to court, so get it right”

An ever present at the club dinner with his wife Sheila he was always great company. Now he will be best remembered for one event that will bring a smile to many a face, for now we will call it ‘pipe gate’ – not the village!!

The polo team was hosting foreign visitors for a tournament and the club was holding a social function for all involved at the 45 Club on Lancaster Road. Not one to shun the limelight Keith stood up to make a speech welcoming our visitors to Newcastle. The assembled masses then noticed that smoke was billowing from his jacket pocket, he had put his, so he thought, extinguished pipe into his pocket, much to the great amusement of all.

Keith, a true gent, forever part of the clubs history and a person that we are all indebted to for his constant work for our club.

The thoughts of the committee and all at the club are with Sheila and all his family.

Rest in peace Keith.


Well Done Ed!

As you will all know Ed Cross loves his Traithlon, but he has just been given some great news from Ironman, I will leave it to his words to describe all…..

“Funny how things change, when I raced in the half Ironman in Turkey back at the end of October I came away feeling disappointed, I swam well, rode ok, then had a disappointing run, I had hoped to run 1:35 for the 21km, but my legs refused to keep up at about 13/14km, and I had to grind out the last 7 or 8 km with very gritted teeth. Finishing the run in 1:45. I was also disappointed as I had felt I could get into the mix, but the competition from across Europe and wider afield was very strong. I spoke to Harry and he gave me great advice, and in essence asked me how I would respond; this boiled down to rise to the challenge and learn from the experience. I did learn from it, and realised that by working hard and showing more grit I can improve.

Ed Iron

Anyway I got an email from Ironman yesterday telling me that I was bronze in their all world athlete ranking for my age group (top 10%), this is calculated by taking your best three results. I only did two races and secured 5515 points, putting me 24th in the UK from 460 Brits and 427th in the World from 8362 athletes. This placed me inside the top 5.1% – and just 6 or 7 places off silver. I am really chuffed by this, all the more so as I do not come from an athletics background, having played mainly racket or team sports in the past. It really shows what you can achieve through training and commitment, and I am really surprised, as well as proud of where I have got to.”

Well done Ed from all at Parogon.

Happy New Year

So we have hit 2016 and we all hope you have had a great Christmas and New Year.

In the build up to the festive break we held the annual curry night, a few drinks a curry and great company. 20 members enjoyed what they though was a free night, but one DC got the sums wrong. (He blames the beer!!). It was good to see a mix of members enjoying a good night out.


After the break the first event of 2016 took place with the annual Old Boys Water Polo match, played for the SamRossDavies trophy, in memory of two late members Sam Ross and Ross Davies.

What a great event this was with just under 40 people from the age of 6 upwards taking to the water over. Three junior teams battled it out ably coached by  Steve, Ian and Mark before the old lags took to the water.

A keenly fought game saw the blues, captained by Ian, going into the last quarter one goal up and Ian was heard to utter the words, this is ours to loose!!! And they did!!! A fantastic game that we all enjoyed – but would you be tempted back??

So the year has got off to a great start and is testament to the strength of the club that events like this are so well attended by all.


Also don’t forget that subs are now due!!!

Who are we?

When the Newcastle under Lyme School pool opened in 1938 an evening swimming club was formed and the Parogon Swimming Club was born. The unique name, and spelling, is a direct result of the original aims of the club to provide swimming for parents of pupils at the school.

PARents of the Orme Girls and Old Newcastillians – PAROGON

To this day the club continues, yes we have had to widen our intake from just parents of pupils, but the club is still strongly linked with the school with our constitutional aim being to help support its charitable status.

So when you were at school you will have heard about this mysterious club, so what was it and what is it today? Well over the years we have been a very successful water polo team, with county and international representation at both playing and coaching level. We have very successfully competed in the National League, at our prime being the 8th best team in the country – with a core of then pupils and ex pupils making up that team.

Back in the 1980’s and early 90’s we competed successfully in the local swimming galas under the stewardship of the 2 Daves’. One, some of you will remember as a caretaker at the school and an integral part of the CCF, Dave Sawyer.

This school club relationship goes back many years with Dennis Booth, swimming teacher, acting as the liaison between school and club in the 50’s and 60’s and being an ever-present on the poolside. His mantel was taken up by Jes Kirkham, who was actually the boiler man and in recent years Bill Bardsley, Mr Leach both ex teachers, would often be seen swimming in the pool. More recently Bes Griffiths had the unenviable task of putting the club lifeguards through their paces, and Phil Butler has been a strong supporter of the club during his tenure as the school swimming teacher.

At our peak in the 70s we had over 900 members, but as competition has increased from health clubs and other recreational activities our membership has dropped considerably from those heady days!

What we now offer is a unique, an affordable club that will allow you to:

  • Train to get fit, no pressure, no galas, just all ages swimming with a coach
  • Open water swim at various locations across the country
  • Play junior water polo
  • Swim at your own pace for as long as you like in one of our general open sessions
  • Have your child learn to swim in our beginners and improvers swimming lessons