Ruth gets a 75th birthday ducking

SWIMMING''Ruth Miller has just turned 75 and is still coaching children at West Suffolk Swimming Club
SWIMMING''Ruth Miller has just turned 75 and is still coaching children at West Suffolk Swimming Club

A CHANCE remark in an email resulted in 75th birthday greetings and a ducking in a pool for Ruth Miller.

Ruth has been helping on and off with the West Suffolk Swimming Club at Bury St Edmunds Leisure Centre since her children were members in the mid 1970s.

When she could not make a session she emailed to say she would be with them as usual on Sunday, when she would be 75.

“They’d put up birthday banners and pushed me in the pool,” she said. “I do swim, though not as much as I ought to.

“I don’t think I deserve the attention because there are senior swimmers who come week after week and give their time.”

Ruth, who lives nearby, helps the youngest group learn basic skills that enable them to compete, including strokes, tumble turns and diving from the box,

“It’s an absolute pleasure seeing very young children grasp skills,” she said. “We try to make it fun, but hidden there is a little bit of discipline – waiting your turn, learning skills and if they’re interested they can compete and be part of a team.”

She has three grown up daughters who joined the club in 1975, so she helped with team management and poolside assistance.