Emma joined Mount Kelly in April 2012 from Rushmoor Royals Swimming Club in Aldershot where in two short years she led 25 staff members and over 300 swimmers to become one of the strongest programmes in the South East. Emma was the Assistant Director of Swimming at Mount Kelly for six years before being promoted to the role of Director of Swimming in September 2018.
Prior to this, Emma worked at Millfield School. She spent a year working as the Director of Swimming (2007 – 2008), playing an instrumental role in helping the school to produce national and international medallists. She guided swimmers such as World Champion, James Guy, Olympian James Disney-May, and Georgia Holderness to her Olympic qualifying time in 2008. Emma also coached other British Swimmers, both senior and junior, including Tristan Slater and Robert Holderness.
With extensive international coaching experience, Emma has mentored multiple swimmers to the European Junior Championships, World Championships, Commonwealth and Olympic Games. Emma’s experience in working with various teams, including British Swimming, over the course of her 15 years in full-time coaching is equalled by her enthusiasm and passion for swimming and Mount Kelly. With her Level 3 swimming qualification, university degrees in Applied Sport Science and Fine Art, coupled with 10 years personal international swimming experience, Emma brings a multi-layered skill set to Mount Kelly Swimming.
Emma’s strong personal swimming career saw her study at Loughborough University during which time she was a very successful member of their swimming team and represented Great Britain in 5,000m Open Water Swimming.
Emma graduated from the Swim England Coach 2024 programme in early 2020 following 14 months of continued professional development at the highest level. The programme is tailored to develop the very best coaches across the country who aspire to excellence and coaching at world class levels. Previously, Emma was selected as one of only three swimming coaches to take part in the prestigious 'UK Women into High Performance Coaching Programme' run by Sports Coach UK and in close collaboration with the Swim England Talent Team and British Swimming.
Greg joined Mount Kelly in September 2013 from Kingsbridge Swimming Club in South Devon, where he worked as Assistant Coach for two years. In this time, he coached a wide range of swimmers including county, regional and national level athletes. Greg also works alongside Emma to coach the Mount Kelly Squad during their warm weather training camps in Lanzarote.
Since joining, Greg has played an integral role in shaping the Swimming Programme, with a specific focus on nurturing the next generation of national and international athletes coming up through the School. He has coached multiple national champions and medallists; guiding swimmers to break both British and English Age Group Records in the process. Consequently, Greg has worked extensively within the Swim England Talent Pathway and most recently worked as Head Coach of the National Development Programme in 2019 as well as a Skills Coach for the DiSE Competition Camp in Dubai in February 2020. Greg was also invited to be part of the Swim England Coach Pathway Programme in 2018, coached Team England at the World School Games in Morocco in 2018, and most recently was invited to be part of the UK Coaching Performance Programme in 2020.
Greg also has a strong background in education and graduated from the University of St Mark and St John with a First-Class Honours Degree in B.Ed. Primary Education in June 2014, leading to Qualified Teacher Status (QTS). He brings a very current knowledge and understanding of the educational system to Mount Kelly and supports and mentors swimmers across all aspects of school life.
Greg became Assistant Director of Swimming in September 2018. His performance coaching and teaching experience have instilled a strong belief in the holistic approach to a child’s development – a feature which is key to the ongoing success of Mount Kelly Swimming.
Neil joined us in April 2019 from Plymouth Leander swimming club, where he spent the previous 3 years. During these 3 years Neil has been the Head of Junior Programmes and more recently, the Head of Regional and National Age Group. During this time Neil spent time coaching with a wide range of swimmers across the Junior set up and has helped them progress through County, Regional and National level. In 2016, during his first year, Neil helped guide the Plymouth Leander Junior team to third place in the National Junior League final.
Prior to this, Neil was at Oldbury swimming club based in Birmingham from 2012-2016. Neil’s coaching career started here at Oldbury, initially as an assistant coach, before adding the role of Junior squad coach. After 3 years in these two roles, Neil was appointed the clubs first ever full time head coach in 2015. During his time at Oldbury, Neil helped the club progress to their best finish in Arena league and achieve their highest number of regional qualifiers. Neil’s own swimming journey began in Bedfordshire, where he grew up, swimming for Modernian swimming club. After leaving swimming at the age of 18, Neil started to compete again in his mid-twenties, achieving regional times and last year won 3 medals at National Masters held in Plymouth. Neil can now be found swimming regularly in open water training and events.
Outside of the club environment Neil has previously been selected to the West Midlands coaching development programme, Devon County ASA talent pathway as a skills coach and the South West talent pathway as a group coach.
Aside from his swimming background, Neil has a strong experience of working in a school educational environment. In 2011 Neil completed a PGCE in Primary Education from Birmingham City University. Also, whilst coaching at Oldbury part time, Neil’s full time job was a sports coach responsible for swimming within a primary school. These two areas of Neil’s development give him a strong grounding to join the Mount Kelly school environment and help benefit the welfare and wellbeing of all children.
Joel joins us after 15 years of swimming experience, with the last two years working exclusively with 9-12 year olds across two different clubs in the South East. This experience has allowed him to refine his practice and be in the best position to really influence the prep side of swimming here at Mount Kelly. Joel’s key values in his coaching stem back to values that he holds from his time swimming, where discipline and work ethic were fundamental.
Joel believes in the perfect formula of careful attention to a technical base and then building the content on top - finding the place for hard work in with the constant attention to detail.
He spent his entire secondary education at Millfield School, and has grown up in the boarding environment and learnt to balance education with an intense activity programme across several sports. The experience Joel gained at Millfield allowed him to understand the importance of lifestyle balance and dealing with performance lifestyle, with breaking his first British record during the build up to his GCSEs, and his second just weeks after, where he won the 1500m freestyle at the European Youth Olympic Festival. Joel is keen to become a positive mentor for the swimmers at Mount Kelly and be able to share his recent experiences of racing at that level and share the life lessons learnt by going through the process.
Since beginning his coaching career, he was the top age group coach at the Hampshire counties in his first year, with the top 11 year old boy. He was also a member of the Hampshire Talent camp 2017 and then on the Berks and South Bucks Talent Programme 2018. He has worked with the best swimmers and coaches across both these counties during the process to stimulate his development further.
Joel had a fantastic Junior swimming career whilst being coached by our very own Emma Collings-Barnes. Joel excelled in the 800m and 1500m freestyle, medalling at Nationals every year between the ages of 11 and 19. At the age of 14, Joel won his first National titles, claiming Gold in the 800m freestyle, open water and in 3 relay teams. Joel also currently holds the 1500m freestyle British age group record (15 Years).
Josh joined the Mount Kelly Coaching team in September 2016 and graduated from the University of St Mark and St John in 2013 where he studied Applied Sport Science and Coaching (Bsc with honours) and also gained his Level 3 Personal Trainer certificate. Since this time he has worked at Dinnaton Swimming Club as the Lead Strength and Conditioning Coach and at Sparkwell Primary school as a P.E Teacher and Sports Coach across all year groups.
Having a real passion for swimming Josh was able to apply his experience and knowledge in all aspects of the swim programme and is now working through his Level 2 Swimming Coaching Qualification at Mount Kelly.
Josh’s background in swimming, strength and conditioning, and all the sport science aspects surrounding the sport has provided him with a wealth of experience and helped him succeed with the coaching of swimmers at from County through to National level. In addition, his high level qualifications and experience in strength and conditioning across a range of performance sports, including Plymouth Argyle Youth teams, makes Josh a very rounded coach with the ability to hone in on specific needs on an individual and group basis.
Josh has been involved with performance sports from an early age having represented Plymouth school boys in football as a child. More recently he played at semi-professional level with Ivybridge Town football club and from his formative years untill late teens he trained in Tae-Kwon-do where he attained his Black belt second Dan and competed both regionally and nationally in both patterns and sparring disciplines.
Harry joined us in June 2020 from Abingdon, Oxfordshire, where he had spent the last three years coaching for Abingdon Vale Swimming Club, Abingdon School, St Helen & St Katharine and The Manor Preparatory School. During this time, Harry was Head of Performance Regional Development, working predominantly with county and regional level age group swimmers. He also spent a lot of time coaching a wide range of athletes, from 6-year-old prep school swimmers to 17-year-old British National finalists.
Harry has 13 years of competitive swimming experience behind him and whilst studying his BA Hons Photography Degree at Plymouth University (2014-2017), he represented Plymouth Leander at British National level. Under the coaching of Jon Rudd and Claudia Clements he achieved two National gold medals, one National silver medal and one National bronze medal in the 50m and 100m Breaststroke events as well as the 4x100m Individual Medley Relays.
During his time at Abingdon School, Harry developed a strong understanding of the private school work/life/training balance which swimmers need to be able to succeed in both academics and their performance swimming. Harry loves to work on the finer details and his coaching methods are extremely technical, focusing on drill work and refining stroke mechanics to achieve a strong foundation upon which to build.
Hannah joined the Mount Kelly coaching team after completing her Sports Management Bsc at Cardiff Metropolitan University. Hannah is no stranger to Mount Kelly as she is an Old Mount Kelleian and an ex-swimmer herself, spending 15 years at the School before heading to university. Hannah’s experience of life at the School make her well placed to understand the challenges faced by our pupils as they balance academic demands with the rigour of high-level training commitments. Hannah gained her Level 1 in teaching aquatics in 2016 and has since worked with all ages and stages of swimmers, gaining valuable coaching experience.
Having her own experience and passion within swimming, Hannah is now able to use her knowledge and understanding to support our swimmers in all aspects of their sport. Hannah is currently working towards achieving her Level 2 Swimming coaching qualification.
Hannah has been involved in a variety of different sports as well as swimming. During her time at Mount Kelly, she was a member of the First Girls’ Hockey Squad and captained the Netball First VII and successfully completed both the 35 and 45 mile Ten Tors expeditions. From this, Hannah understands the importance of team cohesion and making sure people work together; important lessons for the Swimming Squads. Hannah also competed in the gruelling 125-mile Devizes to Westminster Canoe Marathon. She understands how busy life at Mount Kelly can be and can help the swimmers to balance the demands of academic study and swimming training.