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She only let them down once during this period—when she told them she ate no red meat. As she wrote in her memoirs, ‘it was a staggering blow’ to them to think that her ‘tremendous endurance’ was not down to juicy steaks, but a few measly vegetables. One of the clubs which had opened its door to Annette was the Bath Club. If floating on their back in the ornately tiled pool, a swimmer could see the sky through a glass conservatory roof suspended on wrought iron pillars. The foyer, resplendent with exotic decorations in marble, was inspired by the intricate designs of Byzantine culture.
When describing the etiquette of lifesaving, she is very matter of fact. ’ the interviewer asked her while they sat on the steps at Cavill’s Baths. ‘Oh you musn’t let them,’ replied Miss Kellerman, promptly. ‘I’ve hauled lots of them out and no one’s ever got an arm around my neck. ’ And Miss Kellerman flung herself at her companion, turned her over, ‘saved’ her most vigorously and unceremoniously and towed her to the steps. Hearing of Annette’s exploits in the Yarra, Sydney’s ‘swimming elite’—the Cavill brothers and Snowy Baker—used their powers of persuasion by mail to make Frederick Kellerman realise that the only place for Annette was England.
The impact was amazing—audiences were still unable to believe how a diver could fly through the air so gracefully. Because diving was still such a novelty in England at this time there were not really any true diving boards. Annette had to leap from very primitive, hastily constructed planks, nothing like springboards today. On one particular night she was performing at a pool where they had just tacked a board on to a balcony for her performance. And no one told her the pool was shallow. Annette did a one and a half dive and smashed head first into the hard, tiled surface of the bottom of the pool.