FOUR swimming enthusiasts are doing a sponsored charity swim from Ryde, Isle of Wight, to Stokes Bay, Gosport, at 9am next Wednesday.
Their aim is to raise money to support the Solent’s lifeboat station, Gosport and Fareham Inshore Rescue Service (GAFIRS).
GAFIRS are a totally volunteer based charity, so they rely entirely on donations, and we just felt that they’ve looked after usLinda Jaques
Linda Jaques, Carol Rodwell, Mark Bullock and Sarah Rodwell, who all live in Gosport, are members of the swimming group BIMBEL, which aims to promote a healthy lifestyle by enjoying and participating in local sporting events.
The swimmers will be accompanied by eight kayakers, three yachts and a small fishing boat.
‘As a group of swimmers who regularly use the Solent, we have always felt safe knowing that we have our very own lifeboat station,’ said Linda.
‘We swim in the Solent most days and as much as possible throughout the year, even throughout the winter.
‘GAFIRS are a totally volunteer based charity, so they rely entirely on donations, and we just felt that they’ve looked after us.
‘We’ve never had to call them out, but we’d rather not have to do that to say thank you.
‘Hopefully we never will need them, but somebody will, so it’s nice to know that we’ve contributed to that.
‘We’re hoping we’ll have a nice, calm sea and we can swim across (the Solent) with no problems.
‘BIMBEL stands for Be Inspired, Move Barriers, Enjoy Life – and that is what we are going to do on that day.’
BIMBEL have raised around £600 so far in support of GAFIRS, their target being £750.
They have been training for their fundraiser since April, both by swimming in the Solent and in local swimming pools.
They even completed a swimathon in which they swam 200 lengths of a 25 metre pool – which equates to five kilometres.
To keep up with the latest news on their swim, visit their Facebook and Twitter pages, both entitled Bimbel Solent Swim.
To make a donation visit http://uk.virginmoneygiving.com/LindaJaques.