The 1,540 swimmers who took part in this year’s 37th annual Skipton Swimarathon are expected to raise over £45,000 in what is being described by the organisers as one of the most successful years in the event’s history.
Cheered on by Roary and the Green Lions, this year’s Ambassadors, the event kicked off last Wednesday night with the Green Lions’ own swimmers setting the pace. Hotly pursued by three generations of the Allsopp family, the event then went from strength to strength with the Swimming Apprentices, a team of adult non swimmers including the Chairman of the event, taking part on Friday evening. Highlights included great support again from schools across the Island who fielded multiple teams throughout the event. Other notable appearances included Guernsey Sports Association for the Disabled, who entered four teams, the Guernsey Fire and Rescue Service and a team of States Deputies, who also made waves.
The task of collecting funds pledged is now underway. Whilst a large amount was collected during the event, team captains are encouraged to return any outstanding money or additional sums raised as soon as possible to Skipton International’s office at Fairbairn House on the Rohais, next to Waitrose, so it can be passed on the Skipton Swimarathon Committee for early distribution to the good causes.
Chairman Steve Hogg said, “This is a fantastic achievement by all our community, demonstrating an enormous generosity of spirit. This event is about fun and this year in particular, the range of teams from old to young, professional sportsmen to enthusiastic amateurs, both able bodied and disabled demonstrated that the Skipton Swimarathon really does offer something for everybody. In particular, I would like to pay tribute to Roary and the Green Lions whose work as Ambassadors undoubtedly inspired many more of us to dive in, have fun and raise money.”
Jim Coupe, managing director of sponsors Skipton International Limited added, “This is now our fourth year sponsoring the event which just keeps going from strength to strength. The level of enthusiasm amongst both the swimmers and organisers was simply stunning to witness and it is an honour for us to be associated with such a successful event. In particular we are delighted that another major community project can now get underway, in part thanks to the Skipton Swimarathon.”
Both the At Large events were again very successful with many school children able to take part in the Skipton Swimarathon from their own school pools at the Grammar and St Sampson’s/Baubigny.
The main beneficiary of the monies raised this year is the appeal to refurbish the children’s play area at Saumarez Park. Work is now expected to start in earnest on this project any day now.