• General Questions

    What is Poolside Manor?

    Poolside Manor is one of North London’s leading independent swimming tuition and multi-activity centre.

    Our services include swimming tuition for children and adults of all abilities, membership swimming, children’s multi-activity day camps and children swimming crash courses during school holidays. We also offer pool parties at weekends as well as lifeguard and first aid training courses throughout the year. We have pilates and aqua fit sessions weekly. We also offer breakfast and after school clubs to children at St Mary’s Primary School and since January 2018 this includes St Mary's Nursery.

    Where is Poolside Manor? How can I get there?

    We are located in Lyndhurst Gardens, Finchley, North London.

    Click Here to go to our location page for map, directions and information on how to find us.

    At what temperature is the pool water maintained?

    At a very comfortable 31+ degrees.

    What is done to ensure the pool and it's surroundings are kept clean and tidy?

    Our pool systems, receptionists and lifeguards work hard on a regular basis to clean the pool water, pool hall, changing rooms and viewing gallery. We manage the quality of our water by automatically recycling with fresh water on a daily basis rather than dosing the pool with excessive amounts of chlorine and other chemicals that can irritate skin and breathing disorders.

    Lifeguards tidy the pool hall and clean the poolside at least once each day. Our receptionists clean the changing rooms and viewing gallery on a half hourly basis and this is reinforced by an external cleaning company on a daily basis.

    We ask customers to wear shoe covers at all times whilst poolside. We kindly ask customers to refrain from bringing push chairs into the changing rooms, to refrain from eating and drinking in the changing rooms, to ensure all clothes are stored tidily in the changing rooms; to ensure all children shower and are encouraged to use the toilet before their lesson and by complying with our policy that all swimmers must wear a swim hat.

    I wish to cancel my booking. Is this possible?

    Our Terms and Conditions state that bookings are only made upon full payment and are non refundable and non transferable. If you have extenuating circumstances causing you or your child to be unable to attend the activity that you have booked, please contact the Management Team to discuss transferring your booking over to the next term. This is only offered at the discretion of the Management Team.

    Swimming | New Clients

    At what time should I arrive with my child for their swimming lesson?

    Please arrive approximately ten minutes before the scheduled start of your child’s lesson. If you are a new customer, please inform our receptionsist of your arrival. Then go into the changing rooms to help your child get changed. Approximately five minutes before the lesson, your child should have a quick shower before coming out onto poolside and waiting on the benches provided for their teacher to call them for their lesson. If your booking is a parent and toddler lesson, you too will need to get changed and shower before coming out onto poolside.

    When can I book on for swimming lessons for next term?

    The date from which existing and new clients are able to book on for next term can be found in our dates to remember and term dates sections.

    How do you know which class level my child should be put into?

    Unless your child is unable to swim, the simple answer is that we need more information.

    Part of our drive for quality is in maximizing your child’s progress by placing them in exactly the right class based on their ability, not their age. We therefore kindly ask you to book your child in for a free, five-minute assessment involving you and your child visiting Poolside Manor for your child to demonstrate their swimming to one of our teachers. Assessments can be arranged for any day of the week so please do not hesitate to call to arrange this. View our assessment times.

    If this is not possible, our class standards correspond with the ASA National Plan for Teaching Swimming stages. If your child is joining Poolside Manor from a centre following the plan, information about the stage they last swum at and the skills they are able to perform would help us determine their class level.

    Shall I book in for this term even though the term has begun, or wait to start next term?

    Given that we pride ourselves in the quality of our lessons, naturally we will say more is better. Term prices are pro-rata for the number of lessons remaining at the time of booking. Priority is given to existing clients and therefore by booking onto the current term rather than waiting until the next one, you will have priority in terms of lesson availability. Needless to say, your child will benefit from these extra lessons.

    My child is a nervous non-swimmer; how will you support them? What can I do to help?

    Having taught approximately 4000 children to swim each year for over thirty years, we have developed effective practices to support children for whom swimming brings an emotional challenge. Our first strategy is communicating with you, the parent, to better understand the situation. We then seek to ease your child into their class. We normally find it more helpful for parents to watch their child’s progress from the poolside viewing gallery.

    Swimming | Existing Clients

    When can I book on for swimming lessons for next term?

    Priority is given to existing clients in rebooking.

    The dates can be found in our dates to remember or term dates sections.

    I would like to book my other child in for lessons, when can I do this?

    Siblings are given priority before new clients. The date from which bookings can be made can be found on our dates to remember or term dates sections.

    Do you give priority to previous Crash Course attendees?

    Crash course clients are given priority before new clients. The date from which bookings can be made can be found on our dates to remember and term dates sections.

    My child is unable to swim this week, what shall I do?

    Please ring to inform us once you know this is the case so we can inform their swimming teacher. We are not able to make up the lesson.

    I have a list of dates when my child is unable to attend lessons, what can be done?

    It is not our policy to make up missed lessons, scheduled in advance or otherwise. Please do still inform us in advance if your child will be missing a lesson, so we can inform their teacher.

    What does your ‘average’ ratio of swimmers to each teacher mean?

    The average ration means that generally there are six children to one teacher in each class. Occassionally a class may include seven when a child has improved between terms or on a crash course and we need to move that child up a level. If this happens then we ensure a concurrent class will only contain 5 children to maintain the overall ration across the lessons.

    • 3 lessons running 18 children
    • 4 lessons running 24 children

    My child’s lesson was cancelled, what will be done about this?

    Poolside Manor seldom has to cancel swimming lessons but if this does occur, the Management Team will contact each customer affected to inform you of our proposal for making up this lesson.

    Do you offer one-on-one swimming lessons?

    No. We do not have the pool time available.

    How do I get a progress update for my child in their swimming course?

    We are happy to feed back to you the progress of your child’s swimming. Please ask at Reception or telephone to complete a Progress Report. This will be passed onto your child’s swimming teacher who will then contact you directly. Alternatively, if you request, we can relay this information to you on behalf of their swimming teacher.

    Can I change the time or day of my child’s swim lesson?

    This is possible if we have availability.

    Is my child guaranteed a badge and certificate each term?

    Your child will be prepared to achieve a badge and certificate in the build up to ‘Badge Week’ (see dates to remember and term dates sections. This badge will be awarded against set criteria. That said, no swimmer is guaranteed to pass their badge and in these cases a ‘Well Done’ certificate will be awarded in place of the badge and certificate attempted. The cost of the award is included in the course fee.

    How does your termly assessment work: when is it and what does it mean?

    Assesssment week (see dates to remember and term dates sections). Each assessment is carried out in a matter of minutes during each child’s normal swimming lesson. Each swimmer is observed by their teacher plus a senior manager. This establishes the present ability level of the swimmer to determine if the child is ready to move to the next class level or if further time is needed to consolidate their swimming ability and confidence. Any class level change is made for the following term when booking on.

    Why do some teachers get into the water and others do not?

    It is our unique policy for our teachers to teach in the water for our first three levels (B2, B3 and B4) of beginner classes. This is because we feel it is extremely beneficial for such beginner swimmers to experience the support of their teacher. With higher ability classes, it is left to the discretion of each teacher to decide whether to teach in or out of the water.

    I am booking for more than one child; am I entitled to a discount?

    Discounts are offered for the booking of three or more children from the same family. These discounts relate to termly swimming lessons.

    What is your policy on swim hats?

    All swimmers, besides those children in parent and toddler lessons, must wear swim hats. This is part of our strategy to maintain a higher quality of pool water.

    Swimming | Parent and Toddler

    Between what ages are parent and toddler sessions available?

    From shortly after birth, up to three years old. Child Swim Lessons (without parent/carer) are offered for those aged three and above.

    My child is yet to have had all of their inoculations; can they still be booked in?

    Yes they can; at your discretion. The current Health and Safety guidelines stipulate that lessons can commence before inoculations have been completed, at the discretion of the parent.

    My child is under 3, can they start their swimming lessons on their own?

    Unfortunately not. If your child is within 2 or 3 weeks of their third birthday when a new term starts, please contact the Management Team to discuss this.

    Do you insist that babies and toddlers wear swimming hats like all other swimmers?

    No. Children in these lessons do not have to wear swim hats but all other swimmers must. Babies and toddlers must however, wear a water nappy which are available from our shop.

    My child is unwell and is unable to attend this week; what can be done?

    Poolside Manor allows parent and toddler clients to make up a lesson that has been missed. This should be arranged with our receptionist and is always offered at the manager’s discretion. This only applies to parent & toddler lessons.

    I am unable to bring my child along myself this week to our parent and toddler session; what can I do?

    A responsible adult is allowed to bring your child on your behalf. Please give us advance notice of this where possible.

    Is it possible for me to supervise my child from the poolside without getting in at our parent and toddler session?

    No it is not.

    One parent or guardian must be present in the water with each child. This does require the adult to support the child in the water.

    What is the advantage of booking parent and toddler sessions?

    We believe strongly in the benefits of our parent and toddler lessons; namely in preparing each child for their own swimming lessons. We observe a strong correlation between the take up of parent and toddler lessons and the confidence and ability of swimmers in their own lessons aged three upwards.

    Do you provide baby-changing facilities?

    Yes we do.

    Swimming | Children's Holiday Crash Courses

    My child has not been to Poolside Manor before; How do I book a crash course?

    In order to book your child into the right class level, we need to assess their swimming ability. If it is possible for you to bring your child in for a free, five-minute assessment then we encourage this. If this is not possible, we will ask you a series of questions to ascertain their ability. Once booked in, please arrive ten minutes before their first lesson and inform Reception that you have arrived and that you are new to Poolside Manor. Your child should get changed and have a shower and wait on poolside five minutes before the start of their lesson.

    View our assessment times.

    Can I book a half term crash course and then start term time lessons?

    Yes. We will offer a pro-rata price based on the number of lessons remaining in the term. You will also enjoy full priority of being an existing client when it comes to booking on for next term. Your child will be placed into the correct termly class level based on their assessment on the final day of their crash course, if we have availability in the class in question.

    Swimming | School Swimming

    How can I enquire about my childs' progress in their school swimming lessons?

    We are happy to feed back to you the progress of your child’s school swimming via their school.

    My child swims with you in and out of school, how do you ensure lessons remain varied?

    In most cases, your child will not be taught by the same swimming teacher in both school and non-school lessons. In these cases, communication is made between both teachers to establish which badges are being attempted each term and which strokes and skills are being covered on a lesson by lesson basis.

    Do your teacher to swimmer ratios differ in the case of school swimming lessons?

    Our ratio for schools is normally up to ten swimmers to one teacher; which is still favourable relative to other school swimming lesson providers. This is dependant on the number of children in the school group and their ability level.

    Swimming | Adult Swimming

    I have tried before to learn to swim; how will my chances fair at Poolside Manor?

    We boast a very strong track record in our adult swimming lessons. Our low ratios, flexible bookings and option of teaching from the water all support your progress.

    I have previously witnessed trauma around water; how will you be able to support me?

    We benefit from the experience of having taught a significant number of adults for whom swimming has proved difficult. Our skilled and experience teachers will take the steps they feel necessary in co-operation with you. This is likely to involve teaching from in the water. Our pool also has an extended shallow end with a depth of 0.85 metres at its shallowest point.

    What is your ratio of swimmers to each teacher in adult lessons?

    We allow for six swimmers to one teacher. This does vary according to which sessions swimmers choose to attend, and this is flexible.

    We strive to completely fit into your own schedule by allowing you to book your lessons for the days and times that suit you- on a lesson-by-lesson basis. You purchase 5 hours of swimming lessons to use within a 7 week period. We only ask you to book in the time and date of your first lesson when booking, and you can then inform us of your plans each week.

    Do you offer single sex classes taught by a teacher of the same sex?

    Yes we do. We now offer ladies only sessions for both members and lessons. This is on a Friday evenng 7.30pm to 8.30pm. This will be staffed by female teachers and lifeguards only.

    Swimming | Aqua Fit

    I would like to sample your aqua fit sessions; how can I go about this?

    The best session to sample is a pay-as-you-go session on a Wednesday evening at 7.45pm until 8.30pm. Please inform us in advance that you will be attending.

    I am in rehabilitation from an injury; how can Aqua-Fit help?

    We are able to help and again offer the pay-as-you-go Wednesday evening aqua-fit session as the best solution, but there is another session on Wednesday at 11am. Our aqua-fit instructors are experienced and happy to support you in your rehabilitation so please do not hesitate to contact us about this.

    Swimming | Membership Swimming

    After a lapse of more than a year; do I still have to pay the one-off joining fee?

    It is not our policy to waive the joining fee but if you would like to, please make your case to the Management Team. Any waived fees or discounts are offered solely at their discretion.

    What do I pay if I join some way through the membership year?

    The membership year runs from the 1st April until the 31st March. If you join part way through the year, as a type A member you will pay the normal initial joining fee and a pro-rata annual fee. If you register as a type B member, your joining fee and first batch of 15 tickets are not on a pro-rata basis.

    Can I change my membership from one type to another (A to B or vice versa)?

    If you would like to change membership type for any reason, please speak to the Management Team and they will use their discretion in assessing the situation.

    How do membership times vary during the half term and end of term holidays?

    Membership session times do vary during school holidays. We endeavour to achieve minimal changes the best we can. We try to give as much notice to members so they are aware of any changes made. For school holiday times please see dates to remember and for existing timetable and any changed timetable, please see members timetable or take a timetable leaflet located at reception or ask at reception, call us or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

    Multi Activity Day Camps

    My child is new to your camp; how will you deal with this?

    Our camps are growing quickly and we welcome new faces each and every holiday. Your child will enjoy free play at the beginning of each day and thereafter be placed into a group with children of a similar age. Our camp leaders are trained in helping children to settle in and make friends and this is something we encourage in the ethos of our camps.

    What do you mean when you state that each week is themed?

    When appropriate, each week is based on a particular theme. This theme will be broad in its appeal to both genders and all age groups and personalities. It will also open up a host of possibilities in the way of themed activities.

    What is the ratio of children to each camp leader during activities?

    The Ofsted requirement is that each camp leader is responsible for no more than eight children but Poolside Manor operates with a ratio of no more than six children to each leader. In many cases, this ratio is even lower as we understand, particularly in the case of younger children, that children can need or at least benefit from more supervision.

    I have arranged for a responsible adult to collect my child from camp; is this okay?

    Yes this is okay, provided we have been informed in advance. We will need details of the person collecting your child and may need to contact you if we are not 100% happy. We will not be able to allow your child to leave if we are not expecting the adult in question to pick them up; so as to keep your child safe.

    Can my children, of different ages, be put into the same groups for activities?

    We find that after a short while on camp the children settle into their groups and make new friends.

    Who provides the lunch for my child? What else do I need to know?

    It is each parent’s / guardian's responsibility to provide a balanced lunch for each of their children each day and if possible in a lunch box or bag. Poolside Manor provides tables and chairs from which the children will eat their lunch together in their groups under the supervision of our camp leaders. We do supply unlimited water throughout the day but children can have their own water bottles or juice but we do not allow fizzy drinks. NO NUTS OR PRODUCTS CONTAINING NUTS. ANY PRODUCTS FOUND TO BE CONTAINING NUTS WILL BE HELD UNTIL THE END OF THE DAY. Due to the increasing number of allergies within children we may have children on camp that are allergic to other produce and if this is not limited to consumption we may have to ask children to move seats to reduce risks. Items such as SESAME SEEDS can be an issue as is not restricted to consumption allergies. PLEASE INFORM US ON BOOKING FORMS AND IN PERSON ON THE DAY OF THE CAMP IF YOUR CHILD HAS ANY ALLERGIES, BE IT FOOD, PLASTERS, USE OF FACE PAINTS, WET WIPES, SOAPS ETC. This information will only be shared with camp leaders and is in the best interest of the children in our care. Thanks you. If you have any questions or concerns about lunches, contact us via phone, email or ask at reception.

    Pool Parties

    My child’s birthday is coming up, when should I enquire about booking their party?

    Our parties are extremely popular and we therefore encourage parents to enquire about available dates far in advance to avoid disappointment.

    Do all swimmers have to wear swimming hats even if they are only attending this party?

    Yes, it is our policy for all swimmers to wear a swimming hat. If you do not own one, we do have a limited number of hats that can be borrowed for the occasion. Alternatively, we do have a selection from which you can choose to purchase.

    How can you help my party guests to find their way to Poolside Manor?

    Our party invites will be sent in file form with your confirmation email for your party booking or we can send them to you printed by post or you can collect at reception if requested at the time of booking. These invites do have on the back a map to show where we are and how to find us, or if you have sat nav or phone apps our postcode is N3 1TD. If your guests check our website in our contact tab there is a map to show our location and we are shown on Google maps. For further help please contact us.

    Click here to view our How To Find Us page

    My child would like to share their party with a friend; are joint parties possible?

    Yes this is possible. This is available at the same price and allows the same total number of guests to be invited.

    Do you provide party food?

    No. We do provide clean tables and chairs from which to eat and clean surface space from which to serve food. Our party lifeguards will also assist in the serving and tidying away of food. We can provide telephone numbers of local fast food takeaways to deliver. This is often the popular choice for busy parents.

    Do I have to provide my own table decorations?

    Yes. Tables and chairs are provided but table covers and cutlery must be provided by the party parents.

    Do you provide any entertainment after the swimming and food?

    Games are led by our party lifeguard entertainers in our activity room. These games could be anything selected from our huge catalogue of games and can be accompanied by a DVD player, our own party music and surround sound. Alternatively, we are happy to listen to requests. In the event that yours is the last party in the day, our party lifeguards may offer the party parents the option of extending the ‘wet’ side of the party by a little, but this does mean allowing less time for ‘dry’ games after food has been eaten.

    Is it possible for me to hire a separate entertainer for the ‘dry’ part of the party?

    We are happy to hear your ideas for separate entertainers, but these must be agreed by the Management Team and the normal party price will be charged. We consider this as extra money that you do not need to spend.

    Do we have the building to ourselves during our party?

    There is a period of time during which both parties ‘overlap’. Typically as the first party is eating their food and then enjoying their ‘dry’ games, the second party will be arriving, getting changed and then enjoy their ‘wet’ session. During this time, some seating and surface space will be afforded to the second party as they watch their children swimming and prepare their food. Please remember that the party is for the children and they will have their own space to enjoy the party. We politely discourage many adults from attending parties for this reason.

    Lifeguard and First Aid Training Courses

    How can I find out when your next lifeguard and first aid courses are running?

    If you check our dates to remember, calendar, our latest fliers or even ring or email us and ask, we will be happy to help.

    How do I book a lifeguard or first aid course at my own site or for multiple people?

    We are happy to take bookings for more than one person. If you are interested in booking a course to be held at your own site, please contact us.

    I am not sure if I pass all of the fitness criteria; what shall I do?

    First of all, please contact us to ask us any questions you may have. If this does not provide an answer, feel free to arrange a time to come in and swim during our members session, free of charge, to help see if you are eligible.

    What does the National Pool Lifeguard Qualification entitle those successful to do?

    The NPLQ is the industry standard lifeguard qualification that allows those who pass to work as a lifeguard at any swimming pool in the UK. This qualification lasts for two years from the date of certification, before it must be revalidated.

    What do the First Aid at Work and Paediatric First Aid qualifications entitle holders to do?

    Both qualifications are well respected in the workplace and can allow you to become a designated First Aider in your workplace.

    This is something to check with your employer. Both qualifications also offer essential life saving skills for a variety of everyday situations.

    Breakfast & After School Clubs for St Mary's School and Nursery

    Where are the clubs based?

    At St. Mary’s CofE Primary School, Dollis Park, Church End, Finchley. St. Mary’s is based a matter of minutes from Poolside Manor.

    When are clubs available?

    The clubs are available Monday to Friday during term time, when St Mary's is open to students.

    St Mary's Main School

    • Breakfast Club is available 7.30am or 8.00am until start of school.
    • After School Club is available from end of school until 5.30pm or 6.00pm.
    • These are bookd via Poolside Manor and are both based in the main school.

    St Mary's Nursery Club

    • Breakfast Club is available 7.30am until start of nursery.
    • After Nursery Club is available from end of nursery until 6.00pm.
    • These are booked via St Mary's School and are both based in the nursery.

    Poolside Manor offer St Mary's School and Nursery a wrap around care Monday to Friday throughout all school holidays with the exception of bank holidays.

    Please contact us for details.

    Are the clubs exclusive to children who attend St. Mary’s Primary School, & Nursery?

    These clubs are exclusive to St Mary's School and Nursery children.


    I would like to sample your pilates session; how can I go about this?

    Feel free to book in to sample our Monday session from 7.30pm to 8.30pm, for the cost of one lesson. Please inform us in advance that you will be attending.

    Careers at Poolside Manor

    I am interested in applying for work at Poolside Manor, how old do I have to be?

    Applicants need to be aged 16 or over to commence work with us. We do welcome applications from those aged under 16 who are looking to commence work on turning 16 or those looking for work experience in the different roles we offer.

    Is there a limit on the number of job roles I can apply for?

    No, we welcome applications for multiple positions as this shows a sense of commitment and teamwork to the company.

    Where do I find out what vacancies are available?

    Poolside Manor is constantly on the lookout for new staff and as such we do not post specific vacancies to our website or set application deadlines.

    The list of roles we are looking to fill on a continuous basis can be found by Clicking Here.

    I have read the Careers section and would like to apply, what do I do next?

    You need to submit your CV and completed application form to us by post or by email to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

    The application form can be downloaded from the How to Apply tab on our Careers Page.

    For guidance on how to structure your CV, please see the How to Apply tab on our Careers Page.

    I have applied for work at Poolside Manor, how long will it be before I hear from you?

    Once we have received your CV and application form, we will make contact within five working days. If we invite you for an interview, you will again hear within five working days as to the outcome of your application, with feedback.
  • Terms & Conditions

    Please familiarise yourself with the Poolside Manor Terms & Conditions before you sign up to our swimming membership.
    Read the Poolside Manor terms & conditions
Poolside Manor prides itself on the quality of the swimming services it offers, from term-time tuition for children and parents & toddlers, to adults and school groups of all abilities, to holiday crash courses and membership swimming.
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