Tranent Amateur Swimming Club (TASC) outgoing chair Adrian Bayne has spoken candidly how the club helped him during a very tough period of his life.

Adrian, 48, announced last week that he would be stepping down as TASC chair with immediate effect after two years in the role.

In a post on TASC’s Facebook page, Adrian said: “Unfortunately, for personal reasons involving my family and my mental health, I have had to step back from the club over the last three months and also for a period before that.

“I’ve come to the decision that I can’t give the club the commitment that it needs and deserves and therefore I’ve resigned with immediate effect as chair of TASC.”

Adrian is from Prestonpans but now lives in Bathgate. He began working with TASC in 2017, when both his children – Chloe, 17, and Lilly-Ella, 11 – were a part of the club as swimmers. Both girls have since left.

He took over the role as chair in 2020 just before the Covid-19 pandemic hit.

Adrian told the Courier that being a part of the club helped him through a difficult period in his life.

He said: “I’m a recovering alcoholic and I’ve been sober for a while now.

“Being part of the club really helped me get sober.

“They gave me a bit of trust when I joined about five years ago working in a gala convener role and I did a load of daft things at the galas like dressing up as Santa.

“And then the opportunity to become chair came up and that gave me more responsibility again.

“The club has really helped me personally. It has given me a bit of fightback. During a time when I was losing a lot, the club was something I could focus on. That helped keep me sober and I’ll forever be grateful to the club for that.”

Adrian works as a train driver for LNER while also volunteering as a radio presenter for Radio Saltire and has worked with support group Alcoholics Anonymous. The charity can be contacted for support free of charge on 0800 9177 650.

He reflected on some of the highlights of his time at the club, including dressing up in a baby costume and walking from South Queensferry to Prestonpans to raise money for Teenage Cancer Trust and for the club.

He said: “There’s been some great memories, but I think dressing up as the baby for the walk is one that will stick with me. Loads of the kids dressed up too in silly costumes and we did so well to raise some money.

“I leave with some incredible memories, and I’ll remember them forever.”

Adrian added: “When I took over as chair, I had a real vision of what I wanted to do with the club to really bring it forward.

“But then Covid hit and everything kind of stopped. It’s been a much different experience for me as chair than it might have been for others.

“Coming out of Covid, the focus was mostly on getting the kids back in the water and I’m delighted that has happened.

“I’ve had to take some time off recently for mental health reasons and I just feel that this role required someone who could give it their full focus all the time and, right now, due to personal reasons, I can’t do that.

“I know whoever comes in will do a great job. It’s a wonderful club with a great team of staff and coaches. The club is in good hands and I wish them the very best going forward.”

Julia Taylor, head coach at TASC, said: “Adrian has been such a passionate chairperson for TASC over the last two years. Particularly during the uncertain times with Covid, he helped to ensure that the club came out the other side stronger than ever.

“We are all so grateful to him for everything he’s done here at TASC.”