Youngster becomes scuba instructor
27 November 2013 09:07
A 12-year-old school girl from Kent has become the youngest junior master scuba diver in the world
A British schoolgirl has become the youngest junior master scuba diver in the world.
Charlotte Burns, 12, from Biggin Hill, Kent, comes from a family of divers and has been exploring the oceans for the past two years.
She began diving at the age of 10, which is the legal age to do so, and has so far completed more than 70 dives.
Brother Will, 26, was the previous youngest PADI (Professional Association of Diving Instructors) Junior Master Scuba Diver in the world.
He completed the course when he was 14-years-old, but it has taken his sister just 16 months to pinch the title from him.
"She's a tough little girl but her feet are firmly on the ground," said a spokesman for her family.
"When people look at her they cannot believe it. She's been described as phenomenal and I hope by reading her story people will be inspired by her."
Charlotte recently completed the examinations to become a fully-qualified instructor in Larnaca, Cyprus.
There she finished her training, while she also had to take further tests to show her scuba diving knowledge and skills.
The 12-year-old has previously undertaken helicopter underwater escape training and ice climbing examinations.
Her passion for exploring underwater has also had a positive effect on her mother, Louise, who had to overcome her fear of diving so that she could become her daughter's diving buddy.
She is now an advanced PADI diver and has just completed her wreck diving speciality training in Cyprus.
"Charlotte always mothers her mother when they dive together, keeping her safe," added the spokesman.
Ironically, Charlotte learned some of her skills from one of the oldest scuba divers in the world. Ray Woolley, aged 90, has passed on some of his tips to the youngster during the short time that she has been diving.
Anyone thinking of scuba diving on holiday should make sure they cover themselves with adequate
sports travel insurance.