British Swim School Expands to Richmond, Virginia with New Franchise Location

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The Nation's Premier 'Learn to Swim' Provider Awards New Location in West End

The process of swimming positively impacts various aspects such as brain development, coordination, strength, and confidence.

British Swim School, the leading franchise company specializing in “learn to swim” programs, continues its rapid expansion across North America with the opening of its latest franchise location in the West End and Richmond, Virginia. The new facility, conveniently located at the Fairfield Inn on 150 N Pinetta Dr., is now enrolling students for swim lessons, offered on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Saturdays.

Belinda Obeng-Benne and Ernest Lartey are a husband-and-wife power couple who took on the task of teaching young swimmers how to survive in water. With three kids of their own, they understand the importance of learning how to stay safe in and around bodies of water. Obeng-Benne says she chose to invest in British Swim School after researching dozens of other franchises because she felt close to the cause. After running a daycare franchise for ten years, Belinda is very comfortable working with children and felt the pool would be a natural extension of the classroom.

For more than 40 years, British Swim School has been dedicated to teaching water survival skills by teaching infants, children, and adults of all ages the skills needed for water acclimation, water survival, and stroke development. Its mission — ensure that every person, regardless of age or ability, has the opportunity to become a safe and happy swimmer.

Across the nation, eleven people die every day from unintentional drownings, with nearly 4,000 deaths occurring each year. Research shows that participation in formal swim programs, such as those offered by British Swim School, can reduce the risk of drowning by 88% among children who are most at risk for deaths caused by drowning. However, the risk of drowning isn’t limited to children: a Red Cross survey found that more than half of all Americans (54%) either can’t swim or don’t have the basic swimming skills needed to save themselves in the event of a water emergency.

Belinda shares, “Whenever I encounter children at my daycare who require additional developmental support, I consistently recommend swimming lessons. The process of swimming positively impacts various aspects such as brain development, coordination, strength, and confidence. Since the onset of COVID, I’ve noticed many children falling behind in physical and cognitive development, and swimming can play a vital role in helping them regain their progress.”

Belinda and Ernest are thrilled to impart vital survival skills to today’s youth in an engaging and enjoyable manner. Belinda particularly appreciates how British Swim School integrates songs into their daily lessons, a feature that stood out to her amidst numerous other franchises.

“As a daycare provider, I’ve witnessed firsthand how music can create a calming and relaxing environment for children,” explains Belinda. “At British Swim School, we incorporate ‘showtime’ where we sing familiar songs while teaching life-saving skills in the water. This approach helps children feel at ease, enjoy the learning process, and have a blast!”

"Belinda and Ernest are a great fit for British Swim School," said Ashley Gundlach, British Swim School President. "We are ecstatic to have someone with over a decade of childcare experience applying our fun and gentle techniques to swimmers who may be nervous or anxious around the water. Belinda has seen it all running a daycare, so we're eager to see her apply that knowledge to young swimmers."

For more information about British Swim School, visit

To learn more about the benefits of British Swim School’s franchising opportunities, visit

About British Swim School

British Swim School, the nation’s most established swim school franchise with over 40 years in business believes that every individual, regardless of age or ability, should have the opportunity to become a safe and happy swimmer. Offering lessons for babies, children, and adults, the brand is dedicated to its mantra, “Survival of the Littlest,” focusing first on the survival skills needed to survive a water accident, then moving on to stroke development and more advanced skills. Not only does British Swim School give peace of mind to countless families who seek the essential life skill the brand offers their children, the purpose-driven franchise offers an exceptional opportunity for entrepreneurs who seek a fulfilling business venture with a sound foundation, low investment, and an easily scalable model. Part of the Buzz Franchise Brands family, British Swim School currently operates over 300 pools across the United States and Canada.

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Mike Toper
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