Northern Transvaal

The Northern Transvaal, known as the Limpopo province, was a large, relatively sparsely populated province, mostly used for farming. Located along the northern border of South Africa, it shared a border with Rhodesia (Zimbabwe), Botswana and Mozambique.

As it lacked mineral wealth until platinum was discovered there in 1923, the province had little attraction for the conquering British after the Boer War, except as a hunting ground for the abundant game still found in the region. 

Based around the capital city of Pretoria, the Northern Transvaal (or Noord Transvaal  to most of the local inhabitants) competes today as Northern Tigers (Note the same NT abbreviation). Towns along the N1 highway to the border at Messina also includes Pietersburg, Potgietersrus, Warmbad, Louis Trichard. South of Pretoria is Centurion.

The British influence on town planning is clearly absent from the towns of the Northern Transvaal, as there are almost no municipal swimming pools in the province, outside of the capital Pretoria. There are also very few private schools, besides the many new ones south of Pretoria. Some of the towns have suffered the ignominy of being renamed after the ANC takeover of their municipalities, and these towns also have a number of dead swimming pools. 

See the map for the location of the swimming pools.


The old Transvaal capital with its British colonial Union Buildings has numerous municipal pools and many well-managed state and private schools with swimming pools. 


Originally known as Lyttleton, and then from 1967 as Verwoerdburg, it became Centurion in 1995. It was incorporated with Pretoria in 2000. The town grew along the N1 highway between Johannesburg and Pretoria. It features densely populated high-security estates, as well as open spaces still used for farming.


Now known as Polokwane, the town is home to former world age group record holder and Springbok swimming legend Dougie Eager, who coaches the Polokwane Swimming Academy.


Dania Smit of Hoërskool Merensky winning gold in the 200m individual medley at the 2019 Limpopo Schools Swimming Championship in Polokwane.


Former Hoërskool Frans du Toit pupil Ryan Coetzee won a bronze medal at the 2018 Commonwealth Games in Australia. The town boasts four school pools and a swimming club.


May 2021 - Former Laerskool Proteapark and Otters SC member Pieter Coetzee, now with coach Rocco Meiring at TuksSwimming of the University of Pretoria, qualifies for the 100m backstroke at the 2021 Olympic Games. 

Smaller centres

21st September, 2019 - Hoërskool Piet Potgieter of Potgietersrus swimming team.

The bigger towns in the province are located along the N1 highway between Pretoria and Messina. However, there are smaller towns scattered across the bosveld, many with an active competitive swimming culture.

There are fewer visible dead pools than is the case in the Western Transvaal, suggesting that schools are fighting to maintain their swimming facilities, despite the political and cultural opposition their receive from their municipalities.