Sub-aqua club awarded £9,000 grant

The Brighton branch of the British Sub-Aqua Club, based in Shoreham
The Brighton branch of the British Sub-Aqua Club, based in Shoreham

A £9,000 grant will mean more people get the opportunity to explore local marine life and play a key role in marine conservation.

The British Sub-Aqua Club, based at the Sussex Yacht Club in Shoreham, has been giving the funding by Sport England to expand its diver training programme.

Training officer Karl Thomas said: “This is a great opportunity for us to encourage new people of all ages and backgrounds into the sport.

“The Sport England grant enables us to provide new up-to-date equipment for trainees to use, which opens up the experience of diving to a wide group of people.”

The club, which is the Brighton branch, made the application six months ago to buy new scuba diving kit.

It explained to Sport England this would mean it could offer Try Dives and BSAC scuba diving training courses to new members, as well as allowing current members to gain further skills.

The hard efforts paid off last week with the news of grant approval.

The committee is now setting up Try Dives and Ocean Diver training courses, with the first Try Dive events on Saturday, January 26, and Saturday, February 2 at Surrenden Pool, Surrenden Road, Brighton.

“Our club is a very active and enthusiastic group of experienced divers and qualified instructors who can provide a safe environment in which novices can learn,” added Karl.

“We are always looking for new ways to advance our interests from surveys of marine life on the abundance of wrecks off our coast, to underwater photography, which is a great skill to develop. Our training includes all these areas.

“As a group, we often plan diving trips at home and abroad learning to dive in the UK with our club, leads to an internationally-recognised certificate.

“Some of our members have even taken diving up as a career, with opportunities from marine conservation to industrial diving.”

The club’s aim is to see membership rise and get more people out diving the local waters.

It particularly wants to attract younger members, who will be supported by the extensive experience of current members.

Sussex has some fantastic diving, with shipwrecks and reefs to explore.

Four members have recently trained as SeaSearch Observers to report back observations of underwater life to the Marine Conservation Society and it is hoped to continue with further training with the help of the grant.

Visit to keep up with progress on the project over the next few months.