Great Britain /UK

Channel race revived after half a century

The original article by Doug Gillon is posted on The Herald since 2009-02-05

It is one of sport's more exclusive clubs, but there is hardly a queue for membership. Little wonder. You have to smear yourself in various types of noisome grease, and seasickness and being stung by jellyfish are just two of the perks.

We are talking about swimming the Channel, a quaint eccentricity founded by the English. It attained such popularity that it became an annual race, but it has been defunct for 50 years - until today.

It's being revived, with details being announced in London. Eight men and six women, the world's fastest endurance swimmers, will take the plunge at Dover during the spring tide window in mid-August. Two relay teams will compete the next day.

More Great Channel Swim details

The original article (with pictures) by Steven Munatones is posted on 10k swimmer since 2009-02-03.

Nova International, organizers of major elite and mass participation sporting events, will revive one of the world’s classic races: the Great Channel Swim between England and France.

The roots of modern channel swimming go back to 1875 when Captain Matthew Webb became the first person to successfully swim the channel from England to France in a time of 21 hours and 45 minutes.

In the 1950's, the world's best marathon swimmers were recruited to take part in the first Daily Mail International Cross-Channel Swimming Race. 

Channel swim race planned this summer

The original article (with picture of Kevin Murphy) by Graham Tutthill is posted on Kent Online 1.00am Thursday 5 February 2009.

The Channel swim races of the 1950s are to be revived this year, and it could result in a major boost for Dover's economy.

Nova International, the organisation behind the Great North Run and other prestigious sporting events, has revealed plans for a swimming race this summer involving a limited number of elite swimmers.

With the possibility of some of the top names in open water swimming from around the world coming to Dover, the town could be in for a tourism boost as hundreds of spectators head for the port to watch the event.

Cross-Channel swimming race is back, but this one-arm wonder is a tough act to follow

The original article (with pictures) by

It was 2am and all was dark apart from the glow of a lantern on the rowing boat that was to be Eileen Fenton’s constant companion for the next 15 hours. As she set off on her journey from Cap Gris Nez, near Calais, the water was cold, the air crisp and the challenge substantial.

On that morning in August 1950, Fenton, a 21-year-old religious studies teacher from Dewsbury in West Yorkshire, was one of 24 swimmers, a third of them women, taking part in the first cross-Channel swimming race.

Captain Matthew Webb: first man to swim channel

The original article by Doug Gillon is on The Herald since 2009-01-19

HE was the archetypal English hero of yesteryear, darling of the media which described him in 1875 as "probably the best-known and most popular man in the world".

Athlete "gobsmacked" by MBE achievement

he original article (with picture) is on Warrington Guardian since 2009-01-17 | 08:30 AM.

TRANSPLANT games medallist Steve Deakin has been awarded an MBE in the New Year’s Honours List.

The 47-year-old had kidney transplants in 1984 and 1990 and has received the award after years of raising awareness of the opportunities available to transplant recipients.

In June he took part in the Escape from Alcatraz Triathlon, in San Francisco, swimming for more than 25 minutes in shark infested ice cold water. He also went on to swim the English channel for a second time in 14h 15m.

Steve, who has had both feet amputated, said: “It felt absolutely magnificent to receive the award. Gobsmacked I would say.”

A father-of-three children and two step-children, Steve has competed in the transplant games since 1985. He won five medals for swimming, canoeing and squash at the national transplant games in Sheffield last year.

Advice to new Channel swimmers

Summary of several articles by Michael Oram on Google chat site Channel_swimmers and on


Think what you are doing and keep a diary / log of all your training.
Your keenness might be good but your approach might need a little thought.
Firstly if you are willing to put in the training ( a lot of it) you should be able to physically do the swim. -------
Unfortunately 80% + of the swim is mental attitude. That part you need to get into perspective yourself.
It needs to be positive, positive & positive.
Remember the English Channel is one of - if not - the worlds top open water swim. It has waves, tides, wind, unpredictable weather patterns, lots of shipping and the water is cold (16°-18°C).

Swimmer rescued from Lough Swilly

source: BBC
original: BBC
by: ???
date: Monday, 26 May 2008 10:49 UK

A major air and sea rescue operation was launched in Lough Swilly during the weekend after a swimmer went missing off Lisfannon beach.

A support boat following the swimmer from Stragill to Fahan Marina in County Donegal lost sight of him on Friday evening.

The Irish coastguard launched a lifeboat and rescue helicopter, and local boats helped in the search.

The swimmer was found safe and well near Fahan Creek.

Joe Joyce from Lough Swilly lifeboat station said the man had been training for a long-distance swim.

"Halfway into the swim the party in the boat lost contact with the swimmer.

"He saw all the commotion, but wasn't aware it was for himself.

"Everybody acted correctly - if you're in doubt, call out the emergency services.

Boor review: Wild Swim: River, Lake, Lido and Sea: The Best Places to Swim Outdoors...

source: Guardian Books
original: Guardian Books
by: ???
date: ???

In this stunning, full-colour guide, Kate Rew, founder of the Outdoor Swimming Society, takes the reader on a wild journey through Britain, covering 200 rivers, lakes, tidal pools, lidos, estuaries and sea swims.

Whether you are a seasoned outdoor swimmer looking to discover a hidden fairy pool, or a young family seeking a fun day out, Wild Swim has all the information and inspiration you'll need to get you stripping and dipping.

Revealed: Bilbo, Britain's only dog lifeguard

source: The Mirror
original article: The Mirror
author: Nicole Russell  date: 29/02/2008

Bilbo is the David Hasselhoff of the dog world.

Not only does he get to wear a snazzy swimsuit and lap up attention on the beach but he's a genuine life-saver, too.

A six-year-old chocolate-brown Newfoundland, 14st Bilbo has already saved three people's lives.

Patrolling the beach with the five lifeguards at Sennen Cove in West Cornwall, he perches on the back of a quad bike, ready to dive in if duty calls.