‘Come and swim in my pool’ says new Grantham resident Babs

Babs Wilding and her daughter Olivia. Babs is teaching swimming. 332D
Babs Wilding and her daughter Olivia. Babs is teaching swimming. 332D
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It’s hot, the kids are telling you they are bored and you all fancy a swim. You might head to The Meres...or you might head to the home of Babs Wilding.

The mother-of-two has just moved from Nottingham into her Grantham home, in Hillside Drive. It sports a large indoor pool which she is keen to share with the local community, inviting any families or local groups to simply give her a call and pop in.

Babs, 42, said: “It would be selfish to have all this and keep it to ourselves.

“I want to be part of the community, it’s definitely very important to me.”

All she asks in return is a donation to a massive project she is spearheading, to build a £5 million pool complex which will cater for disabled people. It may be in Nottingham, but Babs believes it will benefit people living in Grantham as there is nothing like it in the region.

One feature of the new build is there will be no such thing as a disabled toilet. This is incredibly important to Babs as she has a disability and believes it is wrong to be singled out.

Fourteen years ago, Babs was diagnosed with Wilson’s disease, a degenerative condition which is caused by a build-up of copper in the body. Doctors told her she would lose the ability to walk, talk and have children. But “being a typical Taurean” she refused to let that happen and successfully fought with a research group to get drugs which were available in America over here in the UK.

She now has two children; Lauren, 13, and Olivia, three.

She said: “I wasn’t going to let it beat me, I’m stubborn.”

Moving to a house with a pool was vital to Babs, as she runs a swimming school as a fully qualified teacher.

Little Turtles Swim School has been running for seven years, and teaches children from the age of three, in groups of four to six, or one-to-one. She specialises in teaching children with special needs, and has a wealth of experience in working with children suffering from cerebral palsy.

As the house is too big for just the three of them, Babs is turning the downstairs area into a dormitory and bedrooms, so she can cater for residential visits. School, disability groups, residential homes and any other organisations are welcome to book.

Babs, who offers cheaper lessons for poorer families, is on 07432 646425.