12 January 2011
Plucky participants in the first "Dare To Brave It" Charity Swim.
On a cold Saturday in December, eleven plucky swimmers entered the icy waters off Gurnard Marsh, Isle Of Wight, for the first Dare To Brave It Charity Swim.
The event, organised by The Little Gloster Restaurant and Bar, and held in conjunction with their Christmas Market, raised over £566 for Macmillan Cancer Support.
The gruelling 300 metre course showcased some of the island's most impressive sportsmen and women, despite a water temperature of only 5.6 degrees.
First place was won by seasonsed open water swimmer Dave Pearce, with second place going to the youngest contestant 13 year old Georgia Caws - who was the only swimmer to complete the full course without a wetsuit. A special prize was also awarded to Gary Martin for participating in the best charitable spirit - having taken part in a rainbow hat, Hawaiian shirt and sandals - after being given an encouraging push into the water by Ben Cooke, Head Chef of The Little Gloster!
Other participants included members of the Marlin's Swim Club, event organiser Holly Siddons of The Little Gloster, and members of the WightTri Triathlon Club, with water support kindly managed by Rob Proctor. The swimmers were cheered on by an enthusiatic group of nearly 200 supporters including Jim Hollinshed, Chairman and Treasurer of the Isle of Wight Fundraising Committee. Each participant was handed a warming glass of mulled wine or hot chocolate after completing the event.
The Little Gloster Christmas Market then provided the perfect antidote to the cold outside, with a vast range of Christmas goodies just waiting to be bought and eaten.
The event is the first of many events in the forthcoming Little Gloster calendar and Ben Cooke couldn't have been happier with how the day worked out. He said, 'At this festive time, it is great to be able to raise awareness and give back to such a worthwhile cause, so close to our hearts. The turnout was fantastic - so we look forward to bringing other unique events to Gurnard in the coming months.
Macmillan Cancer Support would like to thank everyone involved in this event and all those who generously contributed to the fabulous fundraisng total.