Why I Swim

There's a kaleidoscope of reasons we have felt the pull to cold water, some borne of joy, some of difficulty and some the darkest sadness. We wanted to create a space for ordinary folks to tell their extraordinary stories. Longterm we plan to create an exhibition (in the real world) and a book. Take a look and message us if you would like your story to be featured.

Why We Swim - Kitty + Judie

My name is Sue Ashby (aged 53) and I swim outdoors at least three times per week with my BFF Debra Challis (aged 58). We are landlocked swimmers based in Daventry, Northants. Our nicknames are Kitty (me) and Judie (Debra). These are the names we would have chosen for ourselves…Here...

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Why I Swim - Sue Fairburn

What a wonderful starting point for all of us who find ourselves treading in the waters of this world. I swim to offload stress and worries. 
I swim to understand my limits.
I swim to draw in beauty. 
I swim to feel weightless. I used to scuba dive for the same...

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Why I Swim - Marie Smith

In January 2018 my lovely mum, Winifred died. She had battled for the two years previously following a massive life changing debilitating stroke in November 2015. She had fought daily with her goals of regaining movement. Her determination and strength of character made her hold on to positivity and hope....

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Why I Swim - Abby Cornforth

Growing up in the Lake District makes me one of the lucky ones I guess, I've never had to go far from my doorstep for a plethora of adventures.Running, gym, tennis and being dragged out for endless hikes by my parents would occupy my free time pre-teens.After leaving home at...

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Why I Swim - Franziska Lüdtke

Swimming has accompanied me for most of my life. The first swim after a period of abstinence always feels like coming home, particularly when it happens in open water. I’m a 51-year-old dramaturg and sometime journalist living in Northern Germany. In the past seven years I have lived in five...

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Why I Swim - Samantha Klasinski

I’ve always loved swimming in the sea but I was first attracted to wild swim in the river a few years ago when the eczema from the chlorine in my local swimming pool really started to flare up. Everybody kept telling me it wasn’t safe and too dirty to swim...

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Why I Swim - Lou Holmes

I swim because...  My mum got cancer when I was 7. It was a frightening time and she had some brutal treatment. But she recovered and almost immediately started working several jobs to keep things afloat at home. This included racing around town on her bike, with her beautiful, long...

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Why I Swim - Liam Murphy

I grew up in the seaside town of Porthcawl and by the age of 10 had joined a local surf lifesaving club. Learning to swim and lifeguard gave me a worthwhile job as a teenager, built my confidence and pretty much made me who I am today. Now in my forties,...

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Why I Swim - Karen Doe

I am quite an ordinary person really, no big dramatic story, I have always been a swimmer but I have been swimming in lakes and rivers for the past four years. I am a single mum and I live with my 21 year old son in Stroud, I moved here...

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I am a mum to four kids, in my 50s, living in Shetland. I discovered wild swimming a couple of years ago after a particularly traumatic relationship breakdown. I felt like my life had imploded and was getting panic attacks. A friend encouraged me to go coasteering, there was a...

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WHY I SWIM - Rosanne Robertson

After art school and about 7 or so Canal Street and Queer scene Manchester years, the city had battered me in all the usual and wonderful ways, and I felt the urge to get out of it rather than going for another spin. I looked for somewhere to go, close...

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