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Ellesmere College Titans swimming club report should be made public

The devastating report that led to the announcement of the closure of the elite Ellesmere College Titans swimming club should be made public, says leading abuse claims lawyer Dino Nocivelli.

Posted on 23 March 2022

The report was produced for Swim England following a year-long investigation by a child safeguarding expert and uncovered more than 70 allegations of coaches’ bullying behaviour and the club’s failure to address numerous welfare issues including eating disorders and serious mental health issues reported by former members of the club.

Last month it was announced that following publication of the report the swimming club based at Ellesmere College in Shropshire is to be closed down.

However, the report remains confidential. The report has been seen by the BBC who published elements of the report in the public interest.

Leigh Day partner and abuse claims specialist Dino Nocivelli says the public interest would be better served by the publication of the full report so that any failings found and any safeguarding recommendations were made public in the same way as the Football Association’s inquiry into child sexual abuse or the Lawn Tennis Association’s inquiry into abuse in Wrexham Tennis Centre.

Abuse experienced by Titans club members is reported to include derogatory remarks of a sexual and personal nature along with a system of weighing children from 10 years old and then publicising the results with others in the team.

The report found that the swimming club’s safeguarding systems were “woefully inadequate” and no welfare concerns were passed to Swim England. It was only after parents raised safeguarding concerns with the Swim England in 2020 that action was taken.

Since the report was published, Swim England says swimmers aged under 18 should only we weighed as part of their training if they are on a “nationally supported pathway”.

Dino Nocivelli said:

“It is disappointing that the safeguarding report has never been published as this would have shown to victims and survivors of abuse that the governing body wanted to thoroughly investigate and publicly expose all of the failings that have taken place to date within Ellesmere College and potentially elsewhere.

“Instead the report has been produced for the use and eyes of Swim England with only excerpts being released to the public and this sadly is not the transparency that the public deserves. The report needs to be published in full and as soon as possible.”

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