A Manchester company that helps teach babies to swim has made a bit of splash by winning a national award.
Suzanne and Gary Horton, owners of Puddle Ducks have scooped the Franchisee Innovation category at the British Franchise Association HSBC awards in Birmingham.
The couple set up Puddle Ducks in 2011 providing swimming classes for children from birth to 10 years old, as well as aquanatal classes for mums-to-be at pools across Greater Manchester, Stockport, Oldham and Tameside. Gary and Suzanne took the brave step of selling their family home to pursue their dream of creating and building their own swimming pool in a former pub, The Apethorn in Gee Cross, Hyde, now called Aqua Nurture.
Suzanne said: “Gary and I are absolutely delighted to win this award; it means so much to us to be recognised in this way. It was a giant leap of faith, but we knew that it was the right thing to do. We and our wonderful team have worked really hard, but it has all been worth it. Each and every day we are able to help children to learn to swim and develop a love of swimming for life which is just so rewarding. ”
Pip Wilkins, CEO of the BFA said: “Puddle Ducks’ achievement is truly inspiring and as judges, we couldn’t help but notice the risk that the pair took to push their business to new heights. We are excited to see how the business grows and shapes itself in the near future.”