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ASLSC Probably..

Who Are We?

As the title suggests, whilst we may compete in Surf Life-Saving events and enjoy a good night out occasionally, our real purpose is, is to SAVE lives, and to achieve this we do two things.

Firstly we patrol Aberdeen beach on weekends during the summer months. With increasing resources due to generous local and national sponsorships, we are able to patrol the whole of Aberdeen beach using our Inflatable rescue boat and a host of rescue boards and skis, offering a full Beach Lifeguard patrol. All club members on patrol are qualified to SLSGB Beach Lifeguard standards, and we take our duties very seriously. This has become even more of an issue, since the City Council withdrew their official Beach Lifeguard Service. We have assessed all of Aberdeen beach for risks which you can read about this in our Beach Risk Assessment.
Secondly we train up anybody who wishes to qualify as a Beach Lifeguard or just wishes to know more about the things we do. We run training on a Sunday afternoon at 12:30pm and a Thursday night from 6:00pm which is working towards achieving the full Beach Lifeguard award which means you can work as a Beach Lifeguard anywhere in the world. Although why you’d want to swap the delights of Aberdeen beach for Bondi, is beyond us! We also train for driving and crewing the Inflatable Rescue Boat (IRB), VHF radio qualifications, advanced resuscitation amongst other qualifications.

Interested in joining and becoming a Beach Lifeguard? If you are or just want to get more information, please get in touch, as we are always on the look-out for new members and the more people that are trained in these essential skills, hopefully the lower the number of accidental drownings there will be.

How the Leopard got it’s spots – Some of the story below is true

A long time ago in a galaxy far, far away………well, a few years back anyway – Let me check and I’ll get back to you – Our club was formed. Naturally, we adopted the Leopard as our mascot – A creature known for it’s love of cold sea water. So, Aberdeen Surf Life Saving Club became “The Leopards”. But what was the real reason we chose our name?

If you didn't already know Aberdeen City's Coat of Arms features two leopards

If you didn't already know Aberdeen City's Coat of Arms features two leopards

Not too many people know why they’re there: According to legend the beasts were granted by James I to Aberdeen as the burgh underwrote his expenses while in exile in England. Over the years the decendants of the original pair of leopards (Nargis and Jocuum) have been looked after by the city elders. However, in recent times budgetary cutbacks and increased health and safety legislation meant that the remaining Big Cat was no longer able to be cared for and had to be housed in a secure lock-up on the beach front. When Aberdeen Surf Life Saving Club took over the use of the beachfront lock-up a proviso was made that they would look after this poor but much loved creature.

During the out of season months you will probably the hardy members of our club either fundraising to pull together enough money to feed her or out in the sea hunting for seals and other marine mammals (mostly on Sunday’s). During the Patrol Season, July and August, we generally feed her any lost children we have left over at the end of the day.

We like to think we’re one of the only surf life saving clubs in the UK, if not the World, who has a wild untamed Cat as club secretary.

Useless Fact

There is enough water in Loch Ness (7.4 km³) to completely submerge the human race thre times over – We’re gonna need a bigger boat!

21 Responses to “About ASLSC”

  • Do you get paid?

  • Hi,
    Unfortunately we in Aberdeen do not get paid as the funding was cut a few years ago. But if you pass the Beach Lifeguard course you are qualified to be a Lifeguard anywhere that accepts the qualification as it is recognised internationally.
    But obviously the joy of doing your job and working with an awesome team is the best perk of all 😉

  • Hi there.

    My brother, Andrew was in your club a few years back and it sounds really quite interesting. I have never surfed before, but I am a strong swimmer and a keen(ish)skateboarder and snowboarder if that helps. Who do I contact directly about joining up?



  • Hi Robin,
    Thanks for the message!
    If you’re already a strong swimmer then you will find the course a lot easier. And if you can already skate and snowboard, you must have decent balance and the skills are fairly transferable so I reckon you could pick it up ok.
    Sending you an email about who to contact.

    Cheers, Josh

  • Hi,
    I’m interested in joining the club. I moved to Aberdeen from Ireland a few months back but have been fairly involved in surf lifesaving and comps back home for the last few years, along with spending a good few summers beach lifeguarding. Would love to get back into it and a wee bit of training is well. How do I go about joining?

  • Hi Rachel,
    That’s great you’re interested in joining! It’s also great that you’ve got the experience, you could probably teach us a thing or two 😉
    If you want to join or just check out what we get up to, simply come down on Sunday (see locations page to find where we are) at around 12:30pm. We have membership forms and relevant paperwork down the club.
    We’re always happy to welcome new members to the club, the more the merrier!

    Cheers, Josh

  • Hi,
    I got your details from the Monster Swim this weekend past. I am a triathlete (70.3) and keen open water swimmer when I get the opportunity. I am very curious about the training and what’s involved as I’ve never surfed before. Also are there age limitations? I am 37 y/o (but a young fit one, ha!)

  • Hi Susan,
    Thanks for getting on contact. I hope you enjoyed the Monster Swim, all of us that went thought it was brilliant! The weather was perfect!
    Swimming is a fairly important part of the training so if you’ve got that down then its the other things such as first aid & resus, and then the different rescue techniques.
    We train with rescue boards (like the ones you’d have seen in Loch Ness), foam rescue tubes (we had those at the swim too but didn’t use them) and also teach to do rescues unaided.
    As far as I’m aware the only age limit is 16 yo and over so you’re ok there, and if there’s an upper limit you’re a lot of years off it so no need to worry!
    It would be great to see you down the club – we meet on Sundays from around 12:30pm at the club, see locations page for our hut 🙂
    Cheers, Josh

  • Ki Ora ASLSC!
    i have a sister currently living in Aberfoyle, Stirling working at the outdoor pursuit school, her and I are both heavily involved in surf life saving back here in New Zealand, we have both been part of the Palmerston North Surf life saving club for 12 years, west coast of the north island, check out our page on facebook search – Palmerston North Surf Life Saving Club.
    sister – Margot Mackay, living in Aberfoyle, is super keen to come and get involved with your club this summer, are you training at the moment ? and how does she get involved? she has just finished her season here in New Zealand as a regional Guard, she is qualified in IRB driving and crewman – (inflatable rescue boat- not sure what you call them? the orange boats?)
    would love to send you some footage from our local beach!
    thanks !

  • Hi Janie!
    Thanks for the message! Good to hear you’re both so involved in surf life saving. Your sister is more than welcome to come to the club during our Sunday sessions (not this Sunday as no-one will be there) and join us. We aren’t doing too much at the moment, I know Stirling a quite a distance from here and wouldn’t want your sister coming out here and being dissappointed with our current lack of activity. However there is a surf lifeguard course coming up soon and also with the summer coming up, we will start increasing our activities, especially when the weather gets good.
    If she wants to join the club, all she needs to do is come down to a session, fill out a membership form and give us £50 and that covers her membership for the rest of the year.
    I added you both on our FB page last night, that’s the best place to keep up to date with what we’re doing.
    Also, great to hear about the IRB (we call it the same thing you do over here) training she has, we have one in the club and usually take it out during the summer, great fun!
    If you two have any more questions, message me on Facebook, I’m Josh Mitchell (club captain) on the club page.

    Hope that helps!

  • Hi ASLSC,

    I was wondering if you guys knew if there are any storage facilities for surfboards at Aberdeen Beach? I’ve recently moved to Aberdeen from Edinburgh but unfortunately don’t have a car to transport a board to the beach – any thoughts would be a great help.



  • Hi Jamie, I’m afraid we don’t have any storage facilities at the club as our space is used for our own equipment such as rescue boards etc. I don’t know of anywhere else along the beach that would be able to offer storage unfortunately. There’s always the option of getting a bike and a board rack for it!

    Cheers, Josh

  • Hi Guys!

    I’ve just moved to Aberdeen and would really like to get involved in what you guys do. I’m a strong swimmer and have swam the monster swim last year and will compete again this year, I’ve surfed for the last couple of years but would be honest in saying I’m still a novice.

    I’ve read through the posts to get some info on membership costs and training times but would like to check if firstly, if you think my experience is suitable and secondly just to confirm training times and places.

    Look forward to hearing from you 🙂

  • Hey guys,
    A friend and I want to go swimming at Aberdeen beach – as it’s bloody cold, we probably will just run in, splash about for 2 minutes and run out feeling accomplished. Not sure about the contamination though the harbour being so near and Aberdeen being a big, smelly city. No wetsuits, just bikini / shorts. (I read the risk assessment which says the cold is a bigger risk than contamination but who knows what changed since 1999 when the risk Ax was done?) What do you think? Do you see people swimming at the beach?

  • Hi Helen,
    It’s great to hear you’re interested in joining the club!
    You may have seen us last year at the momster swim as we were part of the safety cover (on the yellow rescue boards), what a great event!
    At the moment we don’t have any courses due to start this year but that may change if enough people are intersted in doing one and we have trainers/examiners available.
    The best thing you can do right now is come by the club and see what we get up to on a Sunday at around 12:30pm.
    If you like it then by all means join up! 🙂

    Cheers, Josh

  • Hi Agnes,
    You would be very correct in identifying the temperature of the North Sea as bloody cold! Haha.
    I’m quite sure that the water (while not the cleanest around) is safe to swim in.
    You can see on a notice board next to out club, a table of the most recent water quality tests. I have looked at these and all tests state that the water quality is above the minimum allowed for safe batheing.
    I hope that helps!

    Cheers, Josh

  • Hi, I’d love to join, will you be doing sign-ups this sunday aswell despite the surf competition being on?


  • Hello,
    I recently arrived in Aberden and always wanted to do beach lifeguard. Can I come along to the swim sessions you hold Friday at RGU, also do you have other trainng classes you hold?


  • Hi guys! I believe, I have seen one of your trainings on Sunday 10th Nov 2013.

    I took some pictures “from above” and try to find you on facebook, yet I did not succeed… here is link to the photo.


    contact me for more.


  • Hi Hannah,
    Apologies for the lateness of this reply!
    We do singups all year round so if you’re still interested please come down to club on a Sunday afternoon at around 12:30pm. We will resume weekly training on Sunday 5th January so come down then or anytime after then!
    Cheers, Josh

  • Hi Stuart,
    Thanks for the message and sorry for the late reply.
    I’m glad you’re intersted in doing a qualification! Yes you are welcome to come to swimming, we restart training in Feb.
    Before then I’d recommend coming down to the club and meeting us so you can see what we get up to and so on.
    The first beach session of 2014 will be on 5th January (a Sunday) at 12:30pm and we will be the same every Sunday after that.
    Hope to see you down there!
    Cheers, Josh

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