St Neots father targets English Channel breaststroke record

IN exactly 100 days, a St Neots man hopes to swim his way into the record books by becoming the 10th and oldest person to swim breaststroke across the English Channel.

Father-of-two Bryn Dymott will set out from Dover Harbour on Thursday, August 16 to navigate 21 miles through some of the harshest elements and choppiest waters at temperatures of little more than 10 degrees Celsius.

The 49-year-old from Love’s Farm intends to emulate Captain Matthew Webb, the first person to swim the Channel unassisted, in 1875.

Mr Dymott, who made his first foray into open water swimming in the River Great Ouse, where he regularly trains, hopes to raise thousands of pounds for the charity Parkinson’s UK.

“I’ve been thinking about doing this for about five years now,” he said.

“Since then I’ve set myself swims to achieve in order to prepare myself.”

He became interested in swimming 12 years ago when he took his son, Ewen, for lessons at Ernulf pool with the St Neots Swans swimming club.

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About five years ago, after reading a book entitled Water Log, he was hooked.

“Water Log was a brilliant book about one man’s decision to swim the Channel,” he said.

“After that I joined the Outdoor Swimming Society and began swimming from St Neots Rowing Club to Coneygear during the summer.”

Mr Dymott joined the support boat for a friend’s solo Channel attempt in 2009, and that confirmed his burning desire to complete the challenge himself.

By July 2010, he had taken part in both a six-person and a four-person Channel relay and began setting specific goals in order to qualify for a solo Channel attempt.

To be considered for the Channel challenge, he had to complete a six-hour swim in front of the Channel Swimming Association, which he completed in July last year.

Although swimming the Channel will take considerably longer, Mr Dymott feels passionately about the challenge.

“I think I can do it. It’s been done before but not breaststroke by a 50-year-old.

“I only hope my legs will hold up for the many hours it will take, and that on that day in August the Channel will give me suitable conditions to get to France.”

INFORMATION: To sponsor Bryn Dymott on his mammoth Channel challenge visit