British Gas backs British Swimming Heroes Tour

Swim squad: Keri-Anne Payne and Rebecca Adlington front British Gas campaign
Swim squad: Keri-Anne Payne and Rebecca Adlington front British Gas campaign

British Gas is backing a British Swimming Heroes Tour that aims to "inspire" kids and stop them sitting around "watching TV", in the words of TeamGB swimmer Keri-Anne Payne.

The tour is running until 17 September and will feature Payne and other members of the TeamGB swimming, diving, synchro and water polo squads, touring the country to teach youngsters the various aquatic disciplines.

Member of the TeamGB Paralympics squad will join the tour, which is visiting London, Liverpool, Glasgow, Swansea and Coventry, once the Paralympics are over.

Payne spoke to Marketing about the Olympic legacy, at the Gurnell Leisure Centre in Ealing.

She  said: "Hopefully, all the kids in school are more inspired to do sports and not sit around watching TV any more.

"They've seen the likes of Jess Ennis and Rebecca Adlington win medals and they see it is possible to do that. We are not superhuman or freaks of nature – we are just normal human beings who've just trained and worked really hard for this."

British Gas is backing the tour as sponsor of British Swimming, which it began supporting in 2009 and will continue to support until 2015.

The sponsorship deal involves British Gas funding the British Swimming Intensive Training Centre in Stockport and running the 'Free Swims For Britain' campaign.

Payne said: "For us, British Gas have been amazing for the last three or four years they have been with us.

"Without their help we wouldn't be here and without their help we wouldn't have all these kids swimming."

British Gas claims its free swims campaign has resulted in 130,000 people taking free swims since April, and this number is due to rise with the campaign scheduled to run until 30 August.

The Swimming Heroes tour comes after a disappointing performance from the British Swimming squad at London 2012.

The swimmers disappointed many pundits by winning just three medals, meaning the team could face a funding cut ahead of Rio, as TeamGB focuses on sports where Britain has a more realistic chance of taking home medals.

Payne has cast doubt on the idea that Olympic athletes could be in line for multimillion-pound sponsorship deals following TeamGB's hugely successful Olympics.

She said it was "probably not" likely athletes would be in line for such large deals, but added the disclaimer that "the only people that know are the athletes themselves and it is quite a personal thing".


Before commenting please read our rules for commenting on articles.

If you see a comment you find offensive, you can flag it as inappropriate. In the top right-hand corner of an individual comment, you will see 'flag as inappropriate'. Clicking this prompts us to review the comment. For further information see our rules for commenting on articles.

comments powered by Disqus
Brand Republic Jobs

subscribe now


Lynx tells men not to leave love to fate
HBO captures awkwardness of watching sex scenes with parents
Primark to open first US stores with Boston chosen as flagship location
Marketing spend on the up but a reality check is needed before celebrating
Top 10 ads of the week: Jackpotjoy and BT Broadband fend off Kevin Bacon
Lidl beats Tesco to 10m Facebook fans
Center Parcs ad banned for encouraging parents to take kids out of school
Coca-Cola, Cadbury and Amazon named top brands for targeting youth market
Leaked document shows Nokia to be rebranded as Microsoft Mobile
Nike lays-off hardware staff in move that casts doubt on future of FuelBand
Greenpeace says save the bees or humans will die
What brands need to know about changes to VAT and online downloads in 2015
Jimmy Savile victims urged to claim compensation in new ad campaign
UKIP launches biggest  ad campaign and stirs up 'racist' accusations
Apple boss Tim Cook provides voiceover on ad touting firm's renewed green commitments
John Lewis walks consumers through its history to celebrate 150 years of business
Waitrose boosts content strategy with 'Weekend Kitchen with Waitrose' C4 tie-up
Hottest virals: Cute puppies star in Pedigree ad, plus Idris Elba and Fruyo
Amnesty International burns candles to illuminate new hope
Toyota achieves the impossible by calming angry Roman drivers
Tom of Finland's 'homoerotic' drawings made into stamps
YouTube reveals user habits to appeal to 'older' marketers
Ex-M&S marketing chief Steven Sharp consulting at WPP
Wolff Olins reveals new CEO after Apple poaches Karl Heiselman
Glasgow offers £30,000 prize to best digital idea for 2014 Commonwealth Games
Google's revenues surge but shares drop as it grapples with transition to mobile
Facebook beats Twitter to most 'marketing friendly' social media site crown, says DMA
Fableists believe children like Finn should be outdoors enjoying life
Homebase, Baileys and Camelot join the line-up at Media360
MasterCard renews Rugby World Cup sponsorship to push cashless message