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Former Teacher to be BWPL President

Mr Trevor Pledger, well known for his lifelong water polo involvement as player, coach and administrator, has been nominated by the BWPL (British Water Polo League) committee as the League’s new president. He will take over the role from current president Pippa Jones at the annual meeting in Birmingham on 10 May.

Mr Pledger is a former Director of Sport and Director of Partnerships at Bolton School Boys’ Division, who upon his arrival in 1986 was asked to ‘improve water polo’ at the school. He no doubt achieved this goal: during his career, the School produced over 40 youth/junior internationals and nine full internationals, and Boys’ Division teams in recent years have dominated the English Schools’ Swimming Association (ESSA) competitions in all age groups. His retirement in 2017 was marked by a day of ‘friendly’ water polo matches between current and former pupils, followed by a dinner celebrating his career which was attended by more than 300 people. The following academic year, he was presented with the Lifetime Achievement Award at the Bolton News Schools Awards for his longstanding dedication to young people’s sport.

Originally a national standard breaststroke swimmer, Mr Pledger was introduced to water polo by Alf Jordan at the Chelmsford club and came under the expert guidance of coach Jim Caulfield at Kings School, Grantham. After playing throughout his time studying at Birmingham University and Leeds Polytechnic, he moved into coaching while teaching at the Royal Grammar School, Newcastle.

This continued during his time at Bolton School, where his coaching partnership with Mike Glover, first through the school and later through the City of Manchester club, produced many fine players.

Mr Pledger succeeded Trevor Hyde as ESSA water polo coordinator and subsequently became ESSA President. He has been a play zone official at the London Olympics and at European and Commonwealth Championships, as well as becoming a BWPL delegate. He spends much of his time in Malta where he is a member of the Exiles club, helping facilitate a number of successful school and club tours.

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