Water Babies Durham and Darlington

Baby swimming with Water Babies is an exciting, enriching experience for both you and your little one. Not only does it teach vital life skills, but it also enhances the way babies and toddlers learn other skills, too. No one else reaches our high standards of professionalism, and no one else works harder to make sure you and your little one feel happy and safe. And we always incorporate lots of bonding, fun and socialising, so you can be sure that a Water Baby is a happy baby!

Classes across Durham & Darlington are run by Penny & Paul Gordon, who were originally introduced to the concept of baby swimming through taking their first daughter, Abigail, along to Water Babies classes. ‘Swimming was a big part of my life growing up,’ Penny explains ‘so when Abigail was born, I was determined to get her swimming as early as possible.’

Just six months after first dipping her toe in the water with Abigail, Penny took the decision to train as a Water Babies teacher; and when the opportunity came up to take over an existing Water Babies business where she lived, such was her passion for Water Babies that she and Paul didn’t have to think twice!

Ask any Water Babies teacher (and most parents) what their favourite part of our baby swimming lessons is and almost without exception, they’ll all talk about the same thing – progression! ‘There’s nothing quite like watching tiny babies grow into chatty toddlers who are desperate to show off their skills as they swim across the pool,’ Penny smiles.

Penny & Paul are still proud Water Babies parents themselves, having recently welcomed their third daughter, Ella, to the world - and this time round, Paul has had the opportunity to experience Water Babies classes first-hand as a parent. 'I would highly recommend dads to join in whenever they can,' Paul advises, 'as it's a brilliant way to spend precious one-to-one time with your little one.'

When not in the pool with Ella, Paul ensures everything runs smoothly behind the scenes, joined in the office by the wonderfully enthusiastic and friendly Laura, Danielle and Charley. 

They’d love to hear from you, so why not give them a call? You can find them on Facebook at Water Babies (Durham & Darlington), where you'll find a warm welcome waiting for you.

Local news

New short courses starting June 2018

We've just released two brand new short courses starts the first week in June:

  • Sunday's at The Education Village hydrotherapy pool starting 3rd June for 8 weeks, costing £124.00.
  • Monday's at Thornbeck College, Newton Aycliffe starting 4th June for 7 weeks, costing £108.50

These courses include all of the fantastic things that you get in our full course;

  • World class teaching from our supportive instructors
  • a progressive course tailored to each child's pace
  • the perfect pool temperature for baby to relax, learn and be happy
  • a complimentary place on our professional underwater photoshoot
  • an informative welcome pack
  • a keepsake journey book with stickers to mark their achievements
  • a collectable cloth badge at the end of term.

This course is condensed over a shorter number of weeks and the cost is reduced accordingly.

To book your place enter your details here and we'll give you a call to go through everything you need to know.

It's not too late to join...

We've got limited places remaining across our Summer term and we've just released some weekend short courses too. Please call us on 01325 728728 for our latest availability and to book your place.

Toddler classes - 12 months +

We have new classes available for older babies and toddlers starting this term. Each new Chapter brings different options for those of you wishing to join our classes. For our latest availability and a handpicked class that's right for you and your child please give us a call on 01325 728728 or drop us an email to splash@waterbabies.co.uk.

Newton Aycliffe classes

Our Newton Aycliffe classes are handy for most people across the County Durham areabeing situated just off the A1 and A167. We have two venues in Newton Aycliffe a cosy hydrotherapy pool suitable for babies from birth and a larger warm water pool suitable for babies from 12 weeks/lbs. Both are significantly warmer than your local leisure centre so are perfect for your baby to be happy and settled to learn to swim.
Our current Chapter 1 class availability is:
  • Monday's 12.15pm - NEW CLASS
  • Wednesday's 3.30pm - 3 spaces
  • Thursday's 1.00pm - FULL
  • Thursday's 2.00pm - FULL
  • Friday's 12.15pm - 5 spaces
  • Saturday's - FULL

Don't miss out on our chosen time, give us a call on 01325 728728.  If your little one is over 12 months please get in touch as we have a few toddler classes with availability too and we'd love to help you teach your child to love and be safe around water.

New classes released in Durham

We've had so much interest in our classes in Durham for our Summer term we've released some more. Our latest Chapter 1 availability at The Royal County Durham Marriott are:
  • Tuesday's 11.00am - FULL
  • Wednesday's 10.30am - FULL
  • Wednesday's 12.00pm - NEW CLASS
  • Thursday's 11.00am - 4 spaces left
  • Sunday's - ALL FULL

The Durham Marriott Hotel Leisure club has great facilities on site including a Starbucks coffee shop for that well earned coffee and cake after class and a fab restaurant too. It runs at a lovely 30 degrees which is perfect for our classes. Call 01325 728728, PM us your details via our Facebook page or email splash@waterbabies.co.uk with your preferred class and we will call you back to answer any questions and book you into class. 

Weekend Baby Swimming classes

We've got some brand new weekend classes at our lovely warm hydrotherapy pool in Darlington running from May. The hydrotherapy pool at the Education Village in Darlington is like a bath and is just perfect for newborn and tiny babies from birth, in fact our youngest ever Water Baby at this venue was just 3 days old!

We have three class options available:

  • Saturday 2.00pm - 5 places remaining
  • Saturday 3.30pm - 5 places remaining
  • Sunday 2.30pm - LAST SPACE

If you're interested and would like more information please give us a call on 01325 728728, email splash@waterbabies.co.uk, send your details over on here or drop us a Facebook message and we'll get back to you asap.

Dip in to Water Babies

We have new Dip In sessions available. These sessions are payable at £15.50 per session and include a standard Water Babies Happy Nappy worth £10.99. We have over 150 classes over 7 days across County Durham, Darlington and North Yorkshire so there's bound to be a class that works for you and your little one.

If you'd like more information please give us a call on 01325 728728 and we can help. Places must be booked in advance so we can arrange to meet you with everything you'll need.

May to July 2018 term classes released!

Our latest spaces are detailed below. Have a look through and get in touch with your chosen class and your details via one of the following methods:

  1. Call us on 01325 728728 with your preference for day, time and area, we'll take a few details and answer any questions you may have.
  2. Email us at splash@waterbabies.co.uk with a contact telephone number, baby or child's name and date of birth and your home address and postcode so we can tailor our response to you if we can't get through on the phone.
  3. Sign up here: Ask about classes!

As easy as 1, 2, 3. We'll be back in touch as soon as we can when the office is open. We're usually in there Monday to Friday 9.15 til 5.15pm. Speak to you soon.

Our Chapter 1 classes, where our Water Babies journey begins. Suitable for babies from birth, including premature babies, up to 12 months:

Venue Day Time Spaces
The Education Village Saturday 14:00 4
The Education Village Saturday 15:30 7
The Education Village Sunday 14:30 LAST SPACE
Hummersknott Academy Monday 16:30 4
North East Autism Society Monday 12:15 NEW CLASS
Shotton Primary Monday 16:45 NEW CLASS
Durham Marriott Tuesday 11:00 FULL
The Dales School Tuesday 16:45 FULL
Durham Marriott Wednesday 10:30 FULL
Pioneering Care Centre Wednesday 15:30 4
Brandon Primary Thursday 16:00 3
Durham Marriott Thursday 11:00 4
Pioneering Care Centre Thursday 13:00 FULL
Pioneering Care Centre Thursday 14:00 4
Evergreen Primary Friday 16:00 FULL
North East Autism Society Friday 12:15 7
The Oaks School Friday 11:15 FULL

Don't worry if your little one is already approaching 12 months. Our Chapter 2 classes skip the basics and are more appropriate for an older baby. Our fab teachers will catch you up on the fundamentals learned in Chapter 1 alongside teaching the fab new skills of Chapter 2:

Venue Day Time Spaces
Durham Trinity Saturday 15:00 2
The Education Village Saturday 11:15 3
The Education Village Saturday 12:45 4
The Education Village Sunday 14:00 LAST SPACE
Brandon Primary Monday 15:30 4
Durham Marriott Wednesday 11:30 2
The Dales School Wednesday 17:45 FULL
The Education Village Friday 17:30 7

We also have toddler classes available. We split these down by age to give a guide but we'd always recommend a call in to the office to check the suitability of the class for your child.

Chapter's 6 to 9, suitable from 18 months to 2.5 years:

Venue Day Time Spaces
The Education Village Saturday 16:30 2
Durham Marriott Sunday 15:00 LAST SPACE
Durham Marriott Sunday 16:00 LAST SPACE
The Education Village Sunday 16:30 2
North East Autism Society Monday 11:45 2
Durham Marriott Tuesday 10:30 3
North East Autism Society Tuesday 12:45 6
Shotton Primary Tuesday 16:45 5
The Dales School Tuesday 15:45 LAST SPACE
Pioneering Care Centre Wednesday 14:00 LAST SPACE
The Dales School Wednesday 15:45 2
The Dales School Wednesday 16:15 2
Durham Marriott Thursday 12:00 LAST SPACE
Brandon Primary Friday 16:30 5
Brandon Primary Friday 17:00 3
The Education Village Friday 18:00 2

Chapter's 10 to 13, suitable from 2.5 to 3.5 years:

Venue Day Time Spaces
The Education Village Saturday 12:15 2
The Education Village Sunday 13:00 LAST SPACE
The Education Village Sunday 16:00 5
Hummersknott Academy Monday 17:00 6
The Education Village Monday 16:30 LAST SPACE
Evergreen Primary Tuesday 16:30 LAST SPACE
Shotton Primary Tuesday 17:15 5
Durham Marriott Wednesday 10:00 LAST SPACE
North East Autism Society Wednesday 12:15 3
North East Autism Society Wednesday 12:45 3
Durham Trinity Friday 17:00 LAST SPACE

Chapter's 14 to 17, suitable from 3.5 years:

Day Time Spaces
The Education Village Saturday 09:15 3
The Education Village Saturday 09:45 2
The Education Village Saturday 10:15 2
Brandon Primary Monday 16:30 LAST SPACE
Durham Trinity Friday 16:30 2
Durham Trinity Friday 17:30 2
Evergreen Primary Friday 16:30 LAST SPACE



For more information including latest availability and pricing please call 01325 728728, email splash@waterbabies.co.uk or drop us a private message to our Facebook page www.facebook.com/waterbabiesdurhamanddarlington.


Why choose Water Babies?

With so many swimming schools starting to offer baby and pre-school sessions it can be hard to decide who to book with. We believe teaching your baby or toddler to swim is an essential life skill, you never know when it might save their life, so it needs some careful consideration. In our latest series over on our Water Babies Durham & Darlington Facebook page we’ll be exploring the main reasons why our parents trust Water Babies for their little one's swimming journey. Head on over and search #12reasonstochoosewaterbabies

New Bubba clothing range released.

We've released our new and exclusive Bubba the baby whale clothing range. From Happy Nappies and wetsuits, to float jackets and sunhats, we’ve got your little one covered.
Ella is loving her new snuggly Bubba onesie too. The softest onesie she owns and is looking forward to putting it on after classes today.
Laura could hardly contain herself when our first order arrived in the office yesterday. You can catch her opening it on our Facebook page: www.facebook.com/waterbabiesdurhamanddarlington

2018 and it's our Birthday...

Wow, can you believe 15 years ago Paul and Jess Thompson started Water Babies just down the road from us in Ilkley, Yorkshire. How far we have come since that day, now teaching almost 50,000 babies and children to swim across the UK every week and now the World! I wonder if Paul and Jess initially expected baby swimming and Water Babies to become so huge?

Looking to return?

Have you previously swam with us but taken a break? Have your circumstances changed? Did you opt out but have changed your mind? Do you want to get your little one back in the pool and confident for Summer?

We have limited availability for our May term starting soon, call 01325 728728 or email splash@waterbabies.co.uk and we'll check our latest availability for you and find you a place.

Water Babies Franchisee wins National Award!

The lovely and incredibly supportive Franchisee Tamsin Brewis has won a National Award for Female Franchisee of the Year with the BFA (British Franchise Association). Tamsin is following in the footsteps of the whole Water Babies Franchise who were succesful in winning Gold for Franchise of the Year last year.

Tamsin is incredibly knowledgeable in the area of baby swimming and the running of her Water Babies business and recently had her efforts recognised internally by the Water Babies Network when they nominated her as Water Babies Franchisee of the Year 2016/17. Tamsin is always there to support her fellow Franchisees and the Network as a whole and it was a joy to show our recognition at our latest conference by presenting her with our own award.

All at Water Babies Durham & Darlington congratulate you on your win Tamsin, very well deserved!

Water Babies on the telly!

Our co-founder, Paul Thompson was recently on ITV's This Morning  with Eamonn and Ruth. He was invited in to discuss the controversial method of ISR (Infant Survival Rescue). ISR is an aggressive method of teaching water safety skills and not the approach we use at Water Babies. If you'd like to find out more about what we do please give us a call in the office on 01325 728728.

Did you know?..

  • At Water Babies we teach babies and children vital life saving and swimming skills.
  • Your baby can start with Water Babies from birth and stay with us until they're 5 years old, learning fabulous skills, building strength and stamina and having fun.
  • Water Babies only use lovely warm hydrotherapy and warm water pools, lovely for baby and you!
  • Water Babies teachers train to the highest level possible in teaching baby swimming and really are world class.
  • Water Babies Durham & Darlington have 12 different venues across the County Durham, Darlington and North Yorkshire area.
  • Water Babies teach 7 days a week, perfect for busy Mummies and Daddies!
  • Water Babies have 17 different Chapters (or levels) and they follow the Nationally recognised Swim England learn to swim programme.

Water Babies are bound to have a class for you and your little one, please call 01325 728728 or drop us an email to splash@waterbabies.co.uk if you're keen to join one of our award winning classes.

Local Water Baby wins National Little Heroes Award!

One of our brave Darlington Water Babies, has won 1 of 10 National Little Heroes awards! The lovely Harriet Holland who has a beaming smile for her teacher Danielle every week even throughout her many operations was nominated by her teacher and was chosen from a number of well deserving entries.

Well done on scooping your National Little Heroes award Harriet! We're all very proud of you, and especially Danielle.

Follow us on Instagram @waterbabiesdurham with Penny and #waterbabiesella

Did you know we have an Instagram page too? You can follow us behind the scenes and catch up on Ella's journey there too. Ella had her first dip in the pool at the Pioneering Care Centre in Newton Aycliffe at just 7 days old with Daddy.

Proud Dad, Paul has been enjoying his time in the water and experiencing the thrill of seeing Ella's first underwater swims, "I would highly recommend Dad's to join in where they can and if you can fit baby swimming into your schedules, it's a totally brill time to spend with your little ones." Paul.

You can see the start of Ella's Water Babies journey in pictures here. She's since moved to the Royal County Durham Marriott with Daddy and although we can't take photo's there she is loving it!

We are the UK's fastest growing charitable event!

Incredible news that Tommy's and Water Babies' joint fundraising event Splashathon blew the competition out of the water and was named the UK's fastest growing charity event! Massive thanks to all who took the plunge and made this event such a fabulous success last year, we're looking forward to planning the next one already!

Find out more about Tommy's and Splashathon here.

Name... Ready... SNAP!

All of our fabulous beginner's packages include a space at our professional underwater photo shoot. The next shoots are scheduled for:
Saturday 12th May 2018 - The Education Village, Darlington
Saturday 28th July 2018 - The Education Village, Darlington
For more information take a peek at our photos page!
There are also spaces for toddlers or older babies on our shoot give the office a ring on 01325 728 728 for more information.

Did you know we have 17 different levels or Chapters as we like to call them?

When most people think of Water Babies they think of tiny babies in the water. It's true our Chapter 1's are tailored to babies from birth to around 12 months but there's so much more to Water Babies.

We have a specialised and structured swimming programme that we developed with our extensive teacher network experience and Swim England (the governing body for teaching swimming). This means that swimming with us you can be confident that your baby or child will develop their swimming and confidence at their pace whilst being challenged each week.

Our Chapter 1 classes start off with our world class instructors giving you the confidence to to teach your baby to swim. Helping you with the best swimming position, showing you how to help them fall in safely, practicing gentle underwater swims and teaching them to hold their breath.

There are so many skills, fun and games in between to list here but by the time your little one has got to Chapter 17 they'll be at Swim England Stage 3 level. Amazing given most 4 and 5 year olds haven't even started Stage 1. This means they'll be swimming confidently and independently across our pools, surprising us with their techniques from backstroke to butterfly, diving in to the water safely and picking up treasure from the bottom. We're really proud of how much our Water Babies achieve each term and celebrate with a cloth badge.

Come along and join in the fun: email splash@waterbabies.co.uk or give us a call on 01325 728728, if you get our answer phone, sorry! Leave us a message and we'll get back to you.

Don't worry if your little one is already over 12 months, although its best to start at Chapter 1 you can start at any Chapter subject to availability. Give us a call and we'll find the best class for you.

Our gift vouchers are perfect for any occassion - give an experience that lasts a lifetime, any time!

Are you looking for that thoughtful Christening or birthday gift? Have you run out of ideas for a family who has everything? Why not give them the gift of swimming? Our classes are fun, sociable and informative but most of all teach babies essential life saving and swimming skills.
We offer gift vouchers that you can purchase in multiples of £5, £10 or £20 or you could even purchase a course of lessons. We sell the toys used in our classes too so if you'd like baby to have something to open you could add some toys to your gift.
For more information on what we offer please give us a ring in the office on 01325 728 728 or email splash@waterbabies.co.uk

Have you seen our links?

A lot of these companies are run by our very own Water Babies Mummies. Why not give them a try next time you're looking for ideas for gifts, something to do or even looking at capturing those special memories. We are an advocate of local businesses and run a Friday Shares thread each week on our Facebook page. Why not head on over this week and give your business a shout and help yourself to some free marketing!
If you've got a local business and think we can collaborate with each other hen please get in touch with Penny on 01325 728 728 or penny.gordon@waterbabies.co.uk.

Oliver Joyeux makes a splash at 3 days old!

The youngest ever Water Baby nationally was 1 day old Phoenix but one of our local babies was pretty close. Baby Oliver joined our classes at just 3 days old showing it's never too young to start. He had lots of fun with Mummy and Daddy at our lovely warm hydrotherapy pool in Darlington Education Village. Check out their story here.
We use a number of hydrotherapy pools across the region that are suitable for babies from birth. If you'd like more information then please give us a ring on 01325 728 728.