Chester Terrapins is a specialist swimming club for people with disabilities who enjoy swimming in supported surroundings. There are currently (September 2023) about 40 members, with ages ranging from around 8 to 60. Swimming sessions are held in the training pool at Chester Northgate Arena, on Mondays (except bank holidays) from 7.15pm until 8.15pm and although not everybody comes each week, there is always a good mix of people training hard, having a gentle swim or simply enjoying the water and the company.

Terrapins relies mainly on donations and weekly subscriptions to finance its activities. The charges are just £4.20 per week for adults and £2 for juniors (16 and under).

What we offer you

We can teach you to swim, help you improve your swimming if you already know how, and if you’re really keen we can train you to be good enough to win medals at galas.

If you need support getting into the water and getting out we do have a hoist. If you require help once you’re in the water, one of the volunteers will lend a hand.

How to book

You will need to register a Brio Leisure account before you can book online, but you do not need to pay for membership.

As soon as you have an account you can book a place online by selecting the correct date from the date picker and selecting Terrapins Swim if you are a member or Terrapin Swim Helpers if you are a helper. After you have paid you should receive a confirmation email with your booking reference.

Alternatively, if you can’t book online you can reserve your place in person on the same day before 5pm.

Our history

The club was set up in 1967 by Tom Clamp and his wife, Vera. At the time Tom was the games master at the King’s School in Chester. After his death Vera and former physiotherapist, Joan McCully, ran the club together until their retirement in 1994. Since then a committee and several key helpers have steered the club along, registering it as a charity and strengthening links with the NASCH Swimming for people with disabilities.