The Herbie Webster Time Trials

The Herbie Webster Time Trials

Herbie Webster was one of the original members of Macclesfield Masters Swim club. Way back in the old Green Street pool and well before the opening of the current leisure centre, Herbie and others were training at the Green Street public coached swim sessions just as members of the public. However the lure of Amateur Swimming Association (ASA) competitive swimming got to them to the extent that they decided to form a club which could affiliate to the ASA and allow then to realise their plans.

Herbie was one of the ringleaders in this enterprise and eventually took on a coaching role and the club moved to Priory Lane before Herbie retired to be replaced by Sue Seaborn. Sadly Herbie passed away some years ago. Enter Fred Bolton, one of Herbie’s colleagues and early members. At his instigation, the club committee decided to pull together time trial activities and to launch a competition in Herbie’s memory. Members, and that was nearly everyone who used these training sessions in those days, were given the opportunity to swim 50m races in any or all of the four strokes. Their times would be recorded and a formula applied which allegedly allowed a comparison between times achieved by swimmers of all ages thereby allowing us to come up with club champions, ladies and gents.

Mathematicians amongst you may wish to analyse the formula:
Square Root of {[(98-age) x (98+age)] / 95}.


Your new committee this year decided to revive the trials mainly as an attempt to interest a wider group of members to enter the July Cheshire Masters 2019 gala at Stockport. Entries need to be in by the end of June and we pay entry fees for all those who wish to compete.

We have the complete set of results from the 2018 event which available here:

So swimmers may compare their Herbie Webster times and, hopefully, refute the excuse that ‘I would be embarrassed and outclassed if I swam at this meet’.

The Committee was not primarily motivated by the club championship aspect, more a way of giving members an entry time for the Cheshires. However if people want the championship we could apply the formula again and come up with age adjusted club rankings. The only problem is – doe anyone know where the original Herbie Webster Trophy is?

Alan Hallmark