OXFORD Scuba and Snorkelling Diving Club has won the most prestigious award available to diving clubs in the UK.

The club, which has more than 100 members, won the Heinke Trophy because of its commitment to further the interests of its members.

The club, which was founded in the 1950s, meets socially every Wednesday and Friday in the club house at Hinksey Pool.

Diving sessions take place every Friday night at Radley College and there are regular trips to Dorset and Weymouth. Alex Gibson, a scuba diving instructor at the club, said: “It’s a pretty big deal to win this award.”

He said the club had won the accolade because its members had raised £25,000 to buy a new hard boat called Endeavour, which is moored permanently at Weymouth.

He said the club also ran a successful “try-dive” programme and the snorkelling and scuba diving part of the club ran effectively together.

Mr Gibson said: “Last year we had more than 100 people doing the ‘try-dive’ programme and we also have one of the best snorkelling clubs in the country, although we are primarily a scuba diving club.

“We have a mix of town and gown, young and old and we have people who have been here since the 1960s.

“We are a family-friendly club with something to suit everyone, ranging from snorkel trips right up to technical diving trips from our hardboat Endeavour."

Treasurer Andy Pickering said: “This shows what a club can do if it gets motivated. I hope this award continues the momentum and moves the club to even greater things.”

The Heinke Trophy is the British Sub-Aqua Club's premier award. It was donated to the BSAC in 1958 by the former British diving firm Heinke.