Bideford swimmers in cross-Channel bid

SWIMMERS from a Bideford Christian charity will be earning their water wings when they attempt to swim across the English Channel next year. Members of Wings South West are already busy training for the SWIM 2010 fund-raiser that they hope will raise �50

SWIMMERS from a Bideford Christian charity will be earning their water wings when they attempt to swim across the English Channel next year.

Members of Wings South West are already busy training for the SWIM 2010 fund-raiser that they hope will raise �50,000 for the young people's charity.

The 24-mile swim is not for the faint-hearted and has a surprisingly low success rate for completed swims - lower than 10 per cent.

And before they can even take to the open seas, the small team of staff and supporters will spend the next 13 months training in their local pool at Northam and in a Barnstaple fitness studio.


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They will be put through their paces by local exercise and nutrition coach and owner of Absolute Training, Wayne Large, who has sponsored the team with his time and expertise for the duration of their training.

Established in 2000, Wings South West aims to give young people a future and a hope by offering positive relationships and creative learning opportunities to develop skills, self-esteem and confidence.

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Dr Paul Bowser, CEO of Wings South West, said: "During the last eight years, Wings has worked with hundreds of young people from across Northern Devon.

"Although we get support from some local charities and individuals, more than 80 per cent of our funding comes from sources outside the locality.

"We wanted to do something that was high profile, fun and challenging both to help awareness of Wings and to draw in funds for the youth work.

The charity will be holding lots of fund-raising events between now and next summer, including a sponsored swim. For more information call Milly Peart on (01237) 472000 or email milly@wingscharity.com

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