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Emma HainesRNLI Press Officer
at South West.
Lifeboats News Release
A team of hardy swimmers have helped raise £1,000 for Plymouth RNLI.
Ten swimmers from the Maritime Archaeology Sea Trust (MAST) took on a six and a half mile swim challenge earlier this autumn in difficult conditions. Representatives from the swim team visited the station on Saturday (10 November) to present a cheque.
MAST team members Jessica Berry, Tom Cousins, Roger Crook, Rebecca Harris, Paris Illiopoulos, Jean-Marc Jefferson, Charlie Sandercock, Martin Smith, Lindsey Walke and Denise Ward, took on the swim challenge.
The team had originally planned to swim from the wreck of the Coronation, a 90-gun ship built in 1685 which sank in a storm trying to enter Plymouth Sound in 1691. More than 600 men drowned in this single event. The swim, intended to raise awareness for the UK’s maritime heritage, took place on the anniversary of her sinking. The team swam in relay, with two swimmers at a time in the water.
But the weather threw a spanner in the works as Jessica Berry, CEO of MAST and one of the swimmers, explains:
‘As we reached to the breakwater the waves were crashing hard against the rocks and the mist was descending rapidly. It would have been much too dangerous to carry out Plan A - so we had to go reluctantly with B - three lengths of the breakwater, about one mile per length, before swimming in. This meant swimming much of the time against the current and at some points we were going backwards – it was an incredible challenge.’
Plymouth University provided safety cover for the swim, and Plymouth lifeboat also went afloat to show their support, but luckily wasn’t needed operationally on this occasion!
The team has raised almost £6,000 which has been divided between the charity to fund fieldwork for next year, and the RNLI – including £1,000 for Plymouth RNLI.
Dave Milford, Coxswain of Plymouth RNLI, said: ‘Congratulations must go to the swimmers, who tackled an already difficult challenge made more demanding by the weather conditions on the day. We are very grateful for their kind donation to Plymouth RNLI.’
Notes to editors
Please see attached an image of the cheque presentation. Credit RNLI.
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