‘I could see them in the Olympics’ – Emilia and Lilia praised by Melbourn swimming teacher after ‘amazing’ achievements

Lilia Faith Semerene, four, and Emilia Wright, aged three, with their swimming certificates.

Lilia Faith Semerene, four, and Emilia Wright, aged three, with their swimming certificates. - Credit: Archant

A swimming teacher in Melbourn, whose passion is to get children swimming after her own son nearly drowned seven years ago, has praised two of her students who have achieved distances she had never seen in children their age before.

Emilia Wright, three, and four-year-old Lilia Faith Semerene have attended Dawn Hind’s Mel-bourn2swim since they were four months and 20 months respectively and Emilia has now swum 260 metres unaided and Lilia achieved 400 metres.

Dawn said: “I’ve run swimming classes from a 10m pool in my back garden for seven years as my aim is to get children swimming and safe in the water.

“I couldn’t believe what Emilia and Lilia could do, I’ve never seen anything like it.

“I would expect a four-year-old to do 15 metres unaided at a push so both girls have done brilliantly.

“I’m excited to see what they’ll do next – I could see them in the Olympics.”

Dawn is clearly going out on a high, as unfortunately her swimming school is due to close on December 18.

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Emilia’s family live in Melbourn and her mum Catriona said: “Emilia has always loved the water, and loves swimming under it as much as anything.

“We are lucky enough to have family in Greece and in France so we have a couple of sunny holidays each year where she gets the opportunity to do more swimming.

“This summer it was fantastic to see how confident she was in the water, jumping on and off inflatables and squirting her daddy in water pistol battles. She’s been swimming without armbands or a noodle for a few months but I was utterly amazed when Dawn asked her to try swimming a couple of lengths – I knew she would be able to do two but wasn’t expecting her to do 26!”

“And the only reason she stopped was because she needed a wee! I’m so proud of my little water baby.”

South Cambs based Lilia’s mum, Amanda said: “To start with she wasn’t a big fan of being in the water, strongly disliked being on her back and preferred to gracefully lower herself into the water rather than jump in like all the others, but this all changed quickly with Dawn’s help.

“We are so very proud of all she has achieved, but more than anything are proud of how much fun she has had doing it.

“We truly believe that she has achieved all she has simply because of just how much she enjoys swimming. We are so very thankful to Dawn, and all the effort and hard work she put in. We know that she is a big factor in Lilia’s enjoyment and success.”