Jesmond Community Pool has new, inspiring lifeguard
Will Hardy, a 19-year-old resident from Jesmond, has recently trained to be a lifeguard for Jesmond Community Pool despite having severe meningitis.
At the age of two, Hardy was diagnosed with severe meningitis, which resulted in the loss of three limbs. However, 17 years later he is inspiring others to succeed and make the most of their situation.
Though incidences of meningitis have halved in the past 25 years – and continue to drop – the disease still affects around 3,200 people per year, with young children most at risk.
Jesmond Pool, which frequently runs lifeguard training programmes, held a course from 27th to 31st May where Hardy gained his qualifications.
Hardy, who has swum and trained at the pool since he was a young boy, told JesmondLocal he loves working at the pool and being given this opportunity.
“The thing I enjoy most about working at Jesmond Pool is probably the interaction with the customers and knowing I can engage with people for hours on end,” he said.
He has now been working at the pool for just over a month, and continues to make customers and other pool staff smile.
One employee at the pool said: “it’s great working with Will as we have seen him grow from a child to a young adult”.
The 19-year-old is due to start a history and politics course at university in the new academic year but for now continues to enjoy his role on poolside while he is free from his studies.