A SWIMMING teacher in North Yorkshire is set to take on a testing cycling challenge over the weekend in memory of her organisation’s former CEO, who sadly passed from Covid-19.

Former CEO of Water Babies, Steve Franks, sadly died in April after a month-long battle with Covid-19, aged 58.

In his memory, Zoe Murray Ross, a teacher at Water Babies, has decided to take on a 120-mile cycling challenge around North and East Yorkshire.

Throughout the day on Saturday, Zoe will stop off at many swimming pools around the region, starting at The Pheasant in Harome, travelling on to Harrogate, Boroughbridge, York before progressing onto East Yorkshire to Bubwith and Market Weighton and finally finishing at the office in Sutton on Derwent.

Zoe said: “Water Babies is more than a job, it’s family. Losing Steve was a really difficult time and it is important to us that we continue his legacy.

“I wanted to do my bit for Steve, remembering him and honouring him.”

The swimming teacher was “moved,” to take on this challenge. The loss of Mr Franks, who was CEO of the organisation for 11 years, has “shaken the foundation” of the Water Babies team across the country.

In a tribute from Water Babies, Mr Franks was described as “one of the leading, most progressive, respected and influential professional voices within the leisure industry,” as well as “charismatic, loved by all, fun and full of belly laughter.”

The money Zoe raises from the challenge will be donated to the NHS team that tirelessly cared for Steve whilst he was in ICU.

Tory Hardy, franchisee of North & East Yorkshire Water Babies: “This week has been our first week back in the pool following lockdown, and it was bitter sweet.

“We wish Steve was here to share it with us but we know how proud he would be seeing us welcome our Water Babies families back into the water.

“We are so proud of Zoe for taking on the challenge.”

Zoe’s donation page remains open, and can be accessed at: https://bit.ly/39J9yc5