A SCUBA diving club celebrating its diamond anniversary in 2024 is visiting a different dive site for each year of its life.

Hartford Sub-Aqua Club was founded in the early days of Scuba in May 1964, and was then called The Mid-Cheshire College of Further Education Sub-Aqua Club.

“Fortunately, at the next meeting in June, they decided to simplify the name,” said club secretary, Joanna Scott.

Members regularly dive off the North Wales coast where the club has its own boat moored at Dinas Maria, called Kraken, but they travel all over the world, including the Canary Islands and Egypt this year alone.

Northwich Guardian: Intrepid HSAC members exploring the ocean depthsIntrepid HSAC members exploring the ocean depths (Image: HSAC)

The plan to visit 60 dive sites in a single year may seem ambitious, but Joanna believes they can definitely achieve it.  

Though the season for open water diving doesn’t really start in the UK until March, club members donned their drysuits in January and took the plunge into the Menai Strait, which separates Anglesey form the Welsh mainland.

Joanna said: “It sounds a lot, but we’re very active. If we have a three-day trip, and do two dive sites each day, they soon mount up.

Northwich Guardian: Underwater picture from a dive on the club's recent trip to El Hierro in the Canary IslandsUnderwater picture from a dive on the club's recent trip to El Hierro in the Canary Islands (Image: Rob Fitzmaurice)

“We’re a super friendly club. We do loads of other activities together as well as diving.

“Our social events so far this year have included a New Year's walk at Whitegate followed by a pub lunch attended by 19 members, and a Burns Night dinner at the Blue Cap in Sandiway.

“We’re going on a Mersey Tunnel tour soon, and we have regular barbeques at Marbury Park.

Northwich Guardian: Some HSAC members like to explore shipwrecks after researching their historySome HSAC members like to explore shipwrecks after researching their history (Image: HSAC)

“And we’re going to Egypt in April, and we’ve got a talk coming up about what to expect.

“I got into diving because I studied marine biology at university. I just love being under the water for the calmness, and for just seeing what’s down there.

“I like what we call ‘the little squishies’ – the anemones, corals, nudibranchs. There’re lots of lovely fish too.

“Other people like going down to investigate the shipwrecks. They like to research the history beforehand.”

As part its year of celebrations, the club is also hosting a grand celebration dinner for current and former members on May 1, at the Spinner and Bergamot, sixty years to the day since the club was inaugurated.

Joanna added: “It's going to be a year to remember. We've just got back from our first overseas trip to El Hierro in the Canary Islands.

“And there will be shore dives and boat dives off the coast of North Wales, our nearest sea location, as well as trips to Scotland, Plymouth, Weymouth, and Egypt to dive in the Red Sea."