Swimmers jump in the pool in remembrance

MEMORIAL Chris Hunt
MEMORIAL Chris Hunt
West Street, Havant

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MORE than 100 swimmers swam lengths in memory of a man who died after suffering a heart attack at a pool.

The army of goggles and trunk-wearers swam the equivalent of 56.72 miles at Horizon Leisure Centre, in Waterlooville, on Saturday to mark the five-year anniversary of Chris Hunt’s death.

Mr Hunt was just 44 when he collapsed at the centre following a training session in 2007. The Chris Hunt Memorial Channel Challenge has been organised by friends and family since his sudden death.

The non-stop butterfly stroke relay event saw swimmers try to swim the distance to France and back and then back to France again in eight lanes.

Though they missed out on achieving the feat by six miles on the last leg, the team of eight to 65-year-olds managed to raise £501 for The British Heart Foundation.

After Mr Hunt’s death the club intended to raise money for a defibrillator which would potentially save lives in similar circumstances.

But one was provided by the pool’s parent company, Direct Leisure, so the event is run in aid of the UK charity.

Jo O’Dell, committee member for Havant and Waterlooville Swimming Club, whose pools are managed by Horizon, said: ‘It was emotional for everyone who took part.

‘The money raised was fantastic, it is one of the biggest amounts we’ve collected yet.’