Baby and Toddler Teachers
Head Teacher, Parent & Baby Coordinator, Coach, Aquanatal & Aquafit Instructor
AJ learnt to swim at Shirley Swimming Pool from a young age and went on to become a competitive swimmer for Southampton Dolphins, soon reaching the national level. Shortly after leaving Southampton Dolphins AJ realised how much she missed the pool and Dave offered to train her up as an assistant swimming teacher at the age of 14, giving her shifts on Saturday mornings.
By the time she was eighteen AJ was a fully qualified Level Two teacher and began full time employment at Shirley Pool. Since then AJ has become an aqua fit instructor and a mum of twins. In November 2017 AJ qualified as an ASA Parent & Child Teacher.
Teacher, P&B Teacher, Aquafit Instructor & Lifeguard
“Babs” joined the pool, first as a lifeguard, then receptionist and now a trained swimming teacher and Parent & baby swim teacher. Educated at St.Annes, Babs is a natural with children of all ages and a firm favourite in our Beginners. She has also recently become qualified to run Aquafit classes too.
” I love working here, the other teachers are so nice to me, I hope I can work here forever”
We hope so too Babs!
Parent & Baby Teacher, Teacher
Born and raised in Birmingham and a full time swimming teacher for 7 years, Philomena was attracted by the huge number of lessons at Shirley. ” There’s no where like this back home, we have to scramble around different pools doing teaching here and there. The idea of living in the staff house and teaching in one place is great”
An trained Parent & Child teacher and experienced ASA Level 2 Instructor, Philomena is to be seen in both pools teaching at all levels.
Level 2 Teacher
Ashley grew up in Ringwood in a swimming family. Mum was a teacher and Ash had to swim regularly if he wanted to spend time with her. It paid off as he became a National standard swimmer in his teens.
As an adult, Ashley fulfilled his lifetime ambition and swum the English Channel solo in 2017, raising thousands of pounds for a local charity. Now a qualified swimming teacher himself, Ashley teaches at the pool on a Monday.
Leisure Assistant / Lifeguard / Parent & Baby Instructor / Level 2 Instructor
She will be learning various aspects of the business from working in the Reception area and Swim Assisting in the pools.
Shannon has lots of experience working with children as a teaching assistant and with her love of swimming decided this would be her dream job.
Now she has completed her training you will see Shannon teaching afterschool classes and adult lessons and teaching parent & baby classes on a Saturday afternoon.
In December 2021 Shannon qualified as a Parent and Baby Instructor and in April 2022 qualified as a Level 2 Instructor
Level 2 teacher and Saint Swim Club coach
Between studying full time at college and an exhausting swim training programme, Izzy can still be found poolside on Saturday mornings, training her next champion swimmers!
Swimming Assistant / Instructor
Jelena joined the team in November 2021 having qualified as a Level 2 Award Swimming Instructor. During December she also successfully qualified to teach Parent & Baby classes. You’ll mainly see Jelena assisting our experienced Instructors learning the Shirley Pool way to teaching.
Swimming Assistant / Instructor
Autumn joined the Shirley Pool team having qualified as a Level 2 Award Swimming Instructor during the lockdown. She has been very busy learning the ‘Shirley Pool’ way of teaching and you’ll find her assisting most weekdays and teaching Schools. She’ll very shortly be running her own classes too and has her own Crash Course classes throughout this Summer.
FOH Supervisor / Lifeguard
Natalie joined the Front of House team as a Receptionist in the Summer 2019.
She since qualified to become a Lifeguard.
Living locally, Natalie is never far from the pool, even her younger sister is learning to swim with us!
Having previously worked at the Harbour Hotel and the Grand cafe, Natalie comes with plenty of customer service experience. Natalie qualified as a Lifeguard in May 2021.
From the start of 2022 Natalie will be our New FOH Supervisor, overseeing the day to day of Reception and managing the team.
Leisure Assistant / Lifeguard & Charity Champion
Tara joined the team at Shirley Pool in August 2019.
She previously worked in New Look and has joined the team here full-time on Reception.
She is now a qualified Lifeguard. and you’ll find Tara working on Reception most days, always with a smile!
Tara qualified as a Lifeguard in May 2021
Big Red Bus Cafe
He went on to gain Beach Lifeguard and Surf Instructor qualifications while studying & working in Cornwall. Luke used his experience as a part-time chef to help launch the BIG RED Bus Cafe in 2014.
Luke became the Managing Director of Shirley Pool in 2020.
Pool Manager / Level 2 Instructor
Diving straight into her role as Receptionist, Kerry quickly picked up the systems and became Front of House Manager in January 2018.
Since then she has continued to show her dedication and commitment to Shirley Pool and is now our Pool Manager, running the day-to-day operation of the Pool.
Earlier this year Kerry qualified as a Level 2 Instructor and will be seen in the pool covering small pool classes and running Crash Courses
A mother of two, Gina brings her parenting experience and enthusiasm to the baby teaching classes.
Although acting as companies secretary, Gina will often be seen in the small pool after completing the STA Parent & Baby qualification.
West End Swim School Directors
Dave Perry started working at the Shirley Pool in the summer of 1974, helping his Dad barrow the earth for the pool foundations as a schoolboy and returned full time in 1993 to run the business. Qualifying as a swimming teacher in 1981 and then as an ASA Tutor he has many years experience in the water and is the driving force behind the current teaching philosophy.
“We have been gifted with lovely teachers over the years, who really enjoy teaching children to swim. We have taken American and Australian influences and the best teaching practices we can find here to build the plan, but it’s always evolving. Consistency of teachers is vital and if you look at the other teachers on this page there are some common themes: they are all very proud of their work, love teaching swimming . My Dad, Frank, designed the perfect teaching pools and I am proud to have built the business up from that foundation with the help of a great team ”
Although officially retired, David can often be seen as an extra in the water, helping develop the younger teachers.
Although Viv does not have regular toddler or baby classes, she will often be seen at the pool, stepping in to take an early morning class when a teacher can’t make it. It’s not just that she lives close to the pool though, Viv is also the longest serving baby teacher having started at Shirley in1990.
In those days, when the oldest boy, Callum, was at playgroup, Luke (2) would be sat on poolside with the playdough while Mum taught. Later, Jack, the youngest boy, would be juggled on an arm while Viv helped on reception. Throughout the development of the pool and building the business, Viv was ever present.