The world’s largest annual fundraising swim, Swimathon, takes place this weekend in south west London to raise money for Cancer Research UK and Marie Curie.
The registration process closes on Wednesday 25 and participants can choose between the pools selected across the area from Friday April 27 to Sunday April 29.
Celebrating its 31st anniversary, the Swimathon individual challenges include 400 m, 1.5km, 2,5km or 5km and the team challenges have distances of 1,5km and 5km.
Olympic gold-medallist and Swimathon president Duncan Goodhew said: “Swimathon weekend is always a fantastic occasion.
“I always enjoy seeing everyone in the pool with smiling faces, all with the same goal in helping raise money for two great causes.”
There is also another way to participate in the marathon through ‘MySwimathon’, where participants can choose whether to complete individual challenges or set their own distance from April 20 to May 6.
Mr Goodhew said: “It has been a real joy to see Swimathon develop and mature into the great event it is today, and raise so much money for so many worthwhile charities – with this year Cancer Research UK and Marie Curie being the two charity partners.
“Swimathon really gives people a chance to get active with friends and family, whilst doing some good at the same time.
“I am so proud that Swimathon encourages people of all ages and abilities to enjoy the water whether they are the next Mark Foster or a complete land lubber.”
This year, Sue Johnson takes part into the competition with her daughter Grace.
Sue’s husband, Gordon, was a former Great Britain swimmer who passed away in 2014.
Her daughter Grace said: “Dad had always loved swimming and he coached as well. He took me to swimming lessons and it was something we did together.
“I’m really looking forward to taking part in this year’s Swimathon and I hope it raises awareness and lots of funds for Cancer Research UK and Marie Curie, two charities which are both very important to our family.
“My dad was initially diagnosed with oesophageal cancer in 2011 and didn’t want to stop doing anything – he even kept swimming.”
Unfortunately, Gordon was given the news that his cancer was terminal.
Grace said that he didn’t want to die in hospital and thanks to Marie Curie nurses he was able to stay and die at home surrounded by his beloved ones.
Since its creation in 1986 and the official launch in 1988, Swimathon has raised over £48 million for different charities and counted with almost 700,000 participants across 1,000 pools in the UK.
The Swimathon 2018’s official partners work to research and treat illnesses and support patients along all stages of the disease.
Fundraising and partnership are essential for these charities to survive and keep on working.
While Cancer Research UK is the leading charity dedicated to research, prevent, diagnose and treat the cancer, Marie Curie is the UK’s leading charity to offer care and support through any terminal illness.
Cancer Research UK receives no government funding, so every step into the research relies on donations.
The charity supports the work of medical staff, including scientists, doctors and nurses, who spend time as well as understanding and discovering the causes of the cancer as new methods to diagnose, treat and prevent the illness.
On the other hand, Marie Curie employs over 2,700 healthcare professionals to support patients and families and make the most of the time they have together.
To register for the Swimathon 2018, please click on the following link: https://swimathon.org/enter-now