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Starfish School of Swimming provides professional swimming lessons in the Oldham and Rochdale area of Greater Manchester.


We teach babies, toddlers, children and specialize in teaching disabled children. We are not a franchise for a company with headquarters miles away. We offer lessons at Oulder Hill Leisure due to the fantastic cleanliness of the pool and changing rooms and state of the art facilities. There is plenty of free parking too!

Don't leave your child's swimming tuition to chance, use a professional organisation with a proven track record. At Starfish you will be amazed at the rate of your child's progression.

But don't just take our word for checkout our Video Testimonials.



0800 996 1760



55 Market Place
Shaw, Oldham, 
Greater Manchester,



Mon-Thu 10am–6pm
Sat 8:30am–12pm




The children in each class are always matched by age and ability and all our classes are run in line with the ASA National Development Plan for Swimming in the UK.

Group Lessons

Starfish offers tuition for children from the age of 3 years. We specilise in water confidence, learning through play and stroke efficiency.  We have small classes and until the children are competent swimmers all teachers are in the water with the children enabling them to trust the teacher and gain confidence.Starfish operates for 46 weeks of the year as we believe that children learn through routine and consistency therefore we do not close on every school holiday.

School Lessons

If you require mobile, fully qualified swimming teachers with years of experience and lifeguard qualifications then we can help.

We are available to teach within a 15 mile radius of Greater Manchester, provide our own equipment can help guide your school teachers through the basics elements of teaching swimming. We can also offer classroom sessions on water safety, survival skills and can provide worksheets if desired. Badges and certificates are also available for you to purchase for pupils.

All lessons are run in line with the ASA National Development for Swimming in the UK. We also offer consultancy for teaching assistants who accompany disabled children to school swimming. For example you are a mainstream school who use the council school swimming service and you have a disabled child in the class that needs additional help in the pool. Here at Starfish we will offer you a Risk Assessment, Ability Report and specialised lesson plans for the child. This service is very unique but is a valuable tool as swimming is a sport that every child can participate in.

Baby Swimming


Aqua sensory

Aqua Sensory is a unique programme which provides children with a rich mixture of sensory exploration and early developmental opportunities. Unlike traditional swim programmes, where the focus is for the child to learn to swim…

Aqua Sensory has no such pressures. Aqua Sensory combines traditional dry land activities like music, massage, singing, signing, discovery play and movement in the swimming pool. Which is in fact, of course a natural multi-sensory environment itself. Swimming Teachers will find Aqua Sensory not only a fun class to deliver, but a programme where you they can guide their parents to tune in and learn all about their child’s development


Baby Birthlight

Birthlight believes that a lifelong love of water and enjoyment of swimming are best generated by a confident and loving handling of babies in water, by swimming with babies and by imparting gentle progressive methods towards unaided swimming, without ever resorting to forceful conditioning. The sooner a child discovers the freedom of buoyancy and underwater swimming, the more relaxed and independent he or she will be in water.

Every baby can become a water baby. Birthlight’s methods have been designed to create an excellent foundation for future swimming, promoting safe practices and confidence. Our classes are also an ideal environment for mothers and fathers to bond with their babies and toddlers, for children to begin to socialise and for whole families to spend quality time together.



STARFISH is an innovative series of 6 progressive awards designed to introduce babies from a few months old with the accompanying adult to a water adventure where water confidence and safety skills are introduced.

Please refer to the ILSP Resources Manual for further recommendations.

The series is undertaken in shallow water with the guardian in the water holding and supporting the baby. Buoyancy aids may be worn but they are not necessary as the guardian is holding the baby throughout. It is important that the baby is also supported properly, including the head; eye contact should always be maintained and words of encouragement frequently given.

Junior Swimming



The STAnley First Steps Series is an exciting series of 7 progressive awards specifically designed to teach learners from 2 years – with or without an accompanying adult – basic swimming and water safety skills.

A child’s first learn to swim experience is one of the most important in terms of capturing and retaining their interest. We believe the best way to achieve this is to create safe environments in which children can be introduced to the water whilst having fun and by providing a progressive learn to swim programme that is both challenging and rewarding.

This series culminates with the STAnley Star award, which covers all the skills in the 7 awards ensuring that the learner is competent and confident in and around water.



The Octopus series is an exciting series of 3 progressive awards specifically designed for child aged between 5 to 8 years old.

This enables older children to access the Learn to Swim pathway and develop their confidence, knowledge and skills. We believe the best way to achieve this is to create safe environments in which children can be introduced to the water whilst having fun and by providing a progressive learn to swim programme that is both challenging and rewarding.

On completion of the Octopus series, learners can progress through the Learn to Swim journey and move on to the Goldfish, Angelfish and Shark series. A child’s first learn to swim experience is one of the most important in terms of capturing and retaining their interest.



This programme is designed to be the next stage for swimmers who have progressed through either the STAnley First Steps Series or Octopus Series.

The Goldfish series is an exciting series of 3 progressive awards expanding on skills in a fun, progressive, challenging and rewarding way.

On completion of this series, swimmers will be able to swim 15 metres without any aid as well as perform basic floats.



Once swimmers have completed the Goldfish Series they can progress to the Angelfish Series. On completion of the 3 progressive awards in this series, swimmers will be capable of swimming 25 metres without aid, perform butterfly stroke as well as mastering sculling techniques and entries to the water.



On completion of the Angelfish Series, learners progress to the Shark Series. This series educates learners in basic water rescue and survival techniques as well as starts and turns for each of the strokes. On completion of the series learners will be able to swim 100 metres.



The Octonauts series features six awards that have been designed by STA to keep learners ages 2 to 7 years old, of all swimming levels, motivated at any stage of their aquatic development.

These awards focus on the most popular Octonauts characters, including Captain Barnacles and Kwazii, with each award centring around the character’s individual personalities. Teachers can use them multiple times to reward children for specific single achievements and milestones.

As a standalone swimming awards programme, the Octonauts certificates and badges can be used to support all learn to swim programmes, not just STA’s.





The Rockhopper series is an exciting programme consisting of 9 awards which introduce learners with disabilities to the joy of water. The series develops water confidence and water skills as well as increasing water safety awareness and knowledge.

As a standalone scheme, STA’s disabilities awards can be run independently or alongside our full International Learn to Swim Programme.

Junior Lifeguard & Junior Medic


Junior Medic

The Junior Medic Programme is a comprehensive course aimed at children aged 8+ years, which covers such issues as what to do if someone has a sprain, broken a bone, has an asthma attack, heart attack or suffers cuts and grazes.

This a great opportunity to reach out to the community and help save lives

Junior Lifeguard

STA’s Junior Lifeguard Academy is a survival and rescue training programme that has been specifically created for young people aged from 8 years (for the aquatic programmes, learners must be able to swim 50 metres continuously unaided).

The fun-packed programme offers something for everyone; from lifeguarding skills and first aid, to boogie boarding, ocean awareness, distance, sports skills and health and wellbeing.

  • Learners work at their own pace; there is no set timetable or deadline to complete the programme – instructors have the flexibility to schedule them in to lessons in any order
  • Knowledge is reinforced through fun games
  • All the missions and challenges are progressive – learners earn colourful, age-appropriate certificates as they complete set parts of the programme
  • Many of the skills do not have to be completed in a swimming pool and can be done at home, club, school or even online.


Call 0800 996 1760 from 5am – 11pm daily, or use the form below.
All lessons must be paid for in advance.

Make a Booking

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Our Swimming Pool Locations

Oulder Hill Leisure Centre

Hudsons Walk, Oulder Hill, Rochdale. OL11 5EF

Freephone: 0800 996 1760

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Castleton Pool

Manchester Road, Rochdale, OL11 3AF

Freephone: 0800 996 1760

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