YEAR 5 children from Riverside Primary School in Hereford have been learning one of the most important lessons of their lives this term.

Swimming instructors at Hereford Leisure Pool have welcomed - and been wowed by - the enthusiasm, energy and fast learning of the pupils.

This took place during a new two week intensive swim course where children were in the pool every day rather than once a week, using Swim England's School Swim Charter.

'Moving to this model has proved very successful', says the school's headteacher, Emma Shearer. 'Children now become comfortable in the pool with the instructors and have fun while they're learning. Their progress has been staggering.'

Mrs Shearer went on to confirm that a further 450 Riverside children aged from five to 11 years-old will also benefit from this intensive model this academic year.

Halo's Chloe Crum, head of swimming at Hereford Leisure Pool, said that while they deliver thousands of lessons each year, the social enterprise is acutely aware that drowning is still one of the most common causes of accidental death in children in the UK. 'We have made it our mission to help turn those statistics around by exploring new ways to work with local schools and teach children swimming and water safety skills', said Chloe.